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Student Master's Project Evaluates Local City-Hospital Health, Literacy and Recreation Partnership

December 14, 2016

As an intern in the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP)’s Office of Government Affairs, Community Relations and Advocacy, Daniel Kinder, MPH Community Health and Prevention ’17, had the opportunity to bring skills from the classroom into the community, and make an impact on a real-time project with great potential.

Last year, South Philadelphia became the first neighborhood in the nation to have a community health center that provides children and adults with comprehensive health services alongside a full range of literacy and recreational programming. Through a public-private partnership, the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, the City of Philadelphia, and the Philadelphia Free Library opened the Community Health and Literacy Center, where residents can access a CHOP Pediatric Care Center, a branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia, a City of Philadelphia recreation center and City Health Center No.  2.

For his practicum, Kinder was tasked with developing an evaluation strategy for the new center. He began by conducting a literature review to identify the best practices for evaluating a center with co-located services. He met individually with leadership of each group housed in the center to find out what they see as the priority for evaluation. The results of these findings were presented to senior leadership at CHOP at the completion of his practicum.

Throughout his practicum experience, Daniel was able to the apply skills he learned in the classroom at Drexel to the various projects he was working on for CHOP. In support of his practicum, Daniel was awarded funding from the HRSA-Funded Mid-Atlantic Regional Public Health Training Center, which has a local performance site at Dornsife.

In addition to developing an evaluation strategy specific to the new center, Kinder played a role in the Implementation Plan of CHOP’s Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA). Under the Affordable Care Act, non-profit hospitals are required to demonstrate community benefits by conducting a CHNA every three years. Kinder facilitated focus group discussions with CHOP staff about the initiatives they are working on aimed at addressing needs identified in the hospital’s most recent CHNA report. 

Now in the second year of the MPH program, Kinder is conducting his Community-Based Master’s Project with a year-long engagement at CHOP. He spends 8 hours a week with his Community Relations colleagues, conducting a needs assessment and gathering baseline community feedback and data for the evaluation of the Community Health and Literacy Center. He’s working to connect community members with those developing programing at the Center, while enhancing partnerships within the different co-located units.

“This center is set up to be a national model for people to access medical care, literacy resources, and physical activity under one roof,” said Kinder. “It has been an enriching academic experience working for CHOP on this project to apply the skills I’ve learned in the classroom in a professional setting.”