|The start of our 11 page Community Diagnosis Survey|
A full copy will be posted after our time in the field
Rural Week is a week coming up very soon, where we leave Nairobi and travel to a rural area, usually quite far. During this week we are individually placed with host families where we sleep, eat, do chores, and do our best to seamlessly blend into the family and community. For those here on the Development track, all of their time will be spent with the family, truly becoming a part of it. For those of us on the Public Health track, we will spend a lot of time with the family, but our afternoons will be spent conducting a Community Diagnosis Survey. This Survey is something we built during the past 8 weeks of our Community Health class, and it is going to be used to address the objectives we set out for it:
- To determine the population size, structure, and dynamics in the community
- To assess the socio-economic status of the community
- To determine types of illness experienced and actions taken by community members in the two weeks preceding the study
- To assess the community knowledge of Malaria (causes, presentation, and prevention)
- To assess the Environmental Health situation and practices among members of the community
When we return we will compile all of our results (although we are in the same community, we will rarely see each other during the week as we have been placed on the outskirts) and write a report and recommendations for the community. In standard practice we should return to the community to present our findings and assist them in implementing an intervention but due to logistics that is not possible. We will be presenting this report to both the program director, as well as our professor, and they will hopefully find a way to present it back to the community.
I’m incredibly excited for this once in a lifetime opportunity, where we will be applying all of the skills, knowledge, and expertise we have acquired not only in this course but throughout our time as public health students. We will be testing ourselves and our ability to conduct a ‘real’ public health diagnosis, and our abilities to interpret the findings. This is an incredibly opportunity, and will most certainly be a highlight of my time here.
A few fun facts about Rural Week:
- My host family has three children (4, 9, 12), and both parents are self-employed in business working at the market.
- The community we are going too speaks little Kiswahili, a little English, but mainly the local language. Our communication will be quite fun.
- For the community diagnosis each public health student is assigned a guide to ensure our safety as we travel around the community throughout the week, in addition because of the language barrier these guides will serve as our translators
- We will have no access to WiFi (my advisor has to register me for spring) through the week, and will not be seeing our program staff (except the community member who arranged the host-families who will be staying with his family)
I’m very excited and expect quite the blog post when I return!