DESCRIPTION OF THE STRATEGY
Training those who provide services to families in high-risk neighborhoods can leverage existing relationships and create a strong infrastructure of leaders and parents who are knowledgeable about lead poisoning. The staff of social service organizations and leaders of community-based organizations (CBOs) are well-positioned to teach their clients and constituents about lead poisoning and means of prevention. The extent of instruction can range from brief orientations to a day-long seminar on topics such as: lead-based paint hazards and prevention; relevant legal rights (including the federal lead hazard disclosure law); and direct service strategies for assisting families of children at risk for lead poisoning.
High-risk families who receive services from the service provider or are the CBOs’ constituents will benefit from enhanced knowledge and referrals.
Over time, individual or community-wide actions to protect children from lead exposure may become more commonplace as the staff of the service providers and CBOs teach others about lead hazards and lead poisoning.
A community that is broadly educated about lead hazards and aware of appropriate preventive measures may be better poised to support programs and policies that advance primary prevention.
Scope of Potential Impact
City - or - County - Wide
Human Services or Welfare Agency
Depends on the number and frequency of training events being offered.
Other resource requirements:
The sponsoring agency must have access to means of communication with community-based organizations and service providers to market the training and recruit trainees.
Credibility of the training organization among target audiences is a critical institutional prerequisite.
Since relevant training materials to serve as models are available in abundance, the major cost consideration is covering staff time and out-of-pocket expenses to deliver the training, such as copying related materials.
Can be implemented at will; however, experienced staff report that a regular ongoing schedule of training sessions offers considerable advantages with respect to recruiting and logistics.
High. Strategy is quite feasible in most locales.
It may be difficult to secure funding for such training programs. Organizations and agencies will need to repeat trainings due to staff turnover.
ILLUSTRATION OF STRATEGY IN PRACTICE
New Jersey Citizen Action offers regular “Train the Trainer” sessions on lead poisoning prevention for staff of social service agencies and community-based organizations (CBOs) who work with high-risk families. Attendees learn about lead poisoning hazards and their prevention; ways to help clients understand their legal, housing, and educational rights; and strategies for assisting families of children at risk for lead poisoning. They also receive assistance in preparing presentations on lead and are encouraged to teach others about lead poisoning prevention. Training dates are set well in advance so that staff can routinely spread the word about upcoming training opportunities. The training is open to anyone, lasts for one day, includes lunch, and is provided at no charge to attendees. Training is usually provided at consistent locations with convenient parking, to make the logistics simple for both attendees and program staff. NJ Citizen Action receives competitive grant funding of about $20,000 per year from the State Department of Human Services, Office of Prevention of Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities, to support the training program.
Jurisdiction or Target Area
Newark area, NJ
New Jersey Citizen Action
NJ Citizen Action tries to include guest speakers, such as attorneys, pediatricians, or parents of lead poisoned children, to avoid the monotony of a single speaker and to provide expert information.
Other resources utilized
Each trainee receives a large binder full of relevant reference materials, including transparencies for use with overhead projectors and a script on lead poisoning designed to make it easier for attendees to become trainers. The training includes lunch.
Factors essential to implementation
NJ Citizen Action staff believe that the most essential factor to continued success of the training is the quality of the training, as attendance would surely fall off if agency managers and CBOs did not perceive value in dedicating a full day of a new staff member’s time. Keeping logistics routine enables program staff to focus more on recruiting and providing quality training and outreach than on, for example, catering or parking arrangements.
Magnitude of Impact/Potential Impact
Trainees represent a range of entities, including, but not limited to, community-based organizations, day care center staff, tenant groups, school nurses, Head Start staff, union members, city and state agencies, and private health plans. Nearly 200 people were trained in 2003. Feedback from responses to a follow-up form suggests that many trainees share information garnered from the training through newsletters, presentations, and community meetings.
Potential for Replication
Contact for Specific Information
|New Jersey Citizen Action|
References for additional information
|1.|| - NJ Citizen Action is willing to share copies of the training manuals, including the presentation overheads and scripts, to interested programs.|