Community-Campus Partnerships for Health convened our 13th International Conference April 30 - May 3, 2014 in Chicago, Illinois. The conference theme “From Rhetoric to Reality: Achieving Authentic, Equitable & Transformative Partnerships” built on our 2012 conference “Where We’ve Been and Where We Need to Go” by boldly tackling the challenges that prevent us from “walking the talk” of true partnerships and fully realizing their transformative potential. As community engagement, community-based participatory research and service-learning gain prominence, we are concerned that some are using these terms in name only without embracing the commitment to diversity, equity, justice and impact that they demand. We are also concerned that significant resources are being invested in institutional infrastructure and capacity building without a parallel investment being made in communities. At the same time, we seek to recognize and applaud the individuals and organizations who are leading the way in developing and sustaining partnerships that balance power, share resources and contribute to systems change. Their visionary, boundary-spanning leadership demonstrates that it can be done!
The conference challenged and inspired attendees, whether they are directly involved in community-based participatory research, service-learning or multi-sector coalitions - or are working to ensure the conditions are in place for such partnerships to thrive and have impact. Together, we explored how partnerships can transform our communities and institutions.
Chicago is an exceptional city with many examples of thriving, effective community and academic partnerships that are focused on a wide range of health equity and social justice issues. The Chicago Consortium for Community Engagement and Chicago Community Based Participatory Research Network further demonstrate the significant level of leadership and involvement. In addition to those two groups, over 100 local community and academic partners worked to make our 13th conference a success. We thank all those partners and individuals who made the conference such a success!
Goals & Objectives
The conference aimed to:
Mobilize and inspire community-campus partnerships to address the root causes of health, social, environmental and economic inequities
Demonstrate and celebrate the power and potential of partnerships as a strategy for health equity and social justice
Build the capacity of communities and institutions to engage in authentic partnerships
Provide an inclusive and dynamic forum to network, share information and build skills
Shape the program and policy agendas of CCPH and co-sponsoring organizations
Transform the community-campus partnerships movement by connecting people, partnerships and networks from around the world
Through their active involvement in the conference, participants:
Deepened their understanding of how partnerships can transform people, communities, institutions, policies and systems
Reflected on why and how they engage in community-campus partnerships
Achieved their most important objective in coming to the conference
Committed to concrete and specific actions they will take upon returning home