- Ameena Batada, MPH, DrPH
- Jill Fromewick, SM, ScD
- JéWana Grier-McEachin, BA
Research Project Description
Institutional, cultural, and internalized racism are determinants of African American health in the U.S. Another determinant, social support, may influence the relationship between perceived discrimination and the stress response, and between perceived discrimination and healthy behaviors. In the team’s work to reduce health disparities, primarily in churches and housing communities in Western North Carolina, they increasingly recognize the value of engaging in conversations with program participants about racism and its effects on health. The proposed research project will explore rural African Americans’ perceptions of racism and health, investigate the association between racism and health outcomes, and identify the potential influence of rural African American churches on the relationship between racism and health. As increasing social isolation makes it difficult for many Americans to mitigate health risks, identifying ways to promote social support may reduce health disparities. Findings will be utilized by social service providers, health care providers, and institutional and governmental decision-makers in rural jurisdictions to develop and implement policies to address the impact of racism on health.
Ameena Batada, MPH, DrPH
Ameena Batada is an Associate Professor of health and wellness at the University of North Carolina Asheville. Her research and practice involve community-driven projects with a range of partners, child and family health, media and health, and policy advocacy. She teaches courses on health disparities, community health, and health communication.
Jill Fromewick, SM, ScD
Jill Fromewick is a Research Scientist at the Mountain Area Health Education Center (MAHEC), which serves 16 counties in Western North Carolina. In this role, she collaborates with health care providers and community partners to conduct research that contributes to improved health outcomes and increased health equity in the region.
JéWana Grier-McEachin, BA
JéWana Grier-McEachin is the Executive Director of ABIPA and has been involved in community health promotion at many levels. Community engagement is a priority reflected in her activity in the community. Her alma mater’s mantra, “Enter to Learn. Depart to Serve”, is the foundation of her life’s work.
IRL Issue Brief: Western North Carolina
Lack of Data on Black Residents Creates Missed Opportunities to Improve Health in Rural Western North Carolina