Establishing a Community-Based Workforce Alliance (CBWA), 2021
Health Leads is an innovation hub that seeks to unearth and address the deep societal roots of racial inequity that impacts our health. Health Leads works locally and nationally to build partnerships and redesign systems so every person can live with health, well-being and dignity. To address the systemic causes of inequity and disease, Health Leads partners with communities and health systems by removing barriers to resources, and focusing on community-led health initiatives, accelerating practice, and targeted advocacy.
In response to COVID-19, community-based workforces, including community health workers, advocates, caregivers, and promotoras de salud, were mobilized. Recognizing the need to join forces and coordinate support for communities across the country, in May 2020, a core group of organizations–HealthBegins, El Sol, National Association of Community Health Workers, Partners In Health, and Health Leads—launched the Community-Based Workforce Alliance (CBWA). These organizations, and the projects they support, share a deep commitment to working alongside and advocating for the existing community-based workforce.
Through advocacy, communications, monitoring, and technical assistance, the CBWA works to advance supportive policies and practices capable of changing the status quo for community-based workforces. Since launching, the Alliance has doubled and continues to rapidly expand, becoming increasingly representative of the diverse range of community-based workforces in the U.S., including, social workers, doulas, promotoras de salud, faith-based leaders, mutual aid groups, and more.
CHAP’s grant to Health Leads, the anchor organization of the CBWA, supported a project manager and back-office support, allowing the project to recruit members, provide webinars, and share best practices for engaging the workforce equitably and effectively with state Departments of Health.