Last week, WORLD held a convening on The Status of Women’s Health in Alameda County: A Grassroots Perspective at the California Endowment. We had over 70+ people attend, from physicians, to community members, local agencies, advocates, and government officials which created a diverse and dynamic group and discussion.
We started the day honoring the CREW researchers and acknowledging all the hard work they had done over the past 4 months, interviewing, collecting data, and engaging with other women. Following, data was presented from the 209 surveys that were completed. The survey included the following categories: Demographics, Accessing Care, Affordable Care Act, Mental Health, Motherhood, Medication & Drugs, Health & Incarceration, Sex & Dating, Domestic Violence, and Quality of Services. What we gleaned from the data was a surprise to us based on our preconceived notions and what we heard from clients and what our peers and outreach workers hear out in the field. It goes to show us that data doesn’t tell the whole story. One of the biggest themes that came up throughout the day was the need for more mental health services and the stigma associated around it. You can read more about the CREW DATA here.
After the data presentation we asked our expert provider/agency panel Dr. Nicolas Moss, Alameda County Public Health Department, Gloria Lockett, Executive Director at CAL-PEP, Dr. Miriam Vega, Executive Director at AIDS Project East Bay, and Dr. Lisha Wilson, AIDS Healthcare Foundation to react to the data and discuss what this means for their field of expertise. After the expert panel we had our CREW researchers tell us about their experience working on the CREW project, what they learned, and why this work is so important for women.
Following the panel, we had Jameelah Muwwakkil, RFP Coordinator at the Office of AIDS Administration talk us through some of the changes in the Affordable Care landscape. Our Next Steps working groups gave the audience a chance to engage more and brainstorm about the themes they heard and how they are similar to what they observe in their daily life and work. We also discussed solutions to put on the table for consideration to address the greatest barriers and what resources are necessary to fully address what’s at stake for women in Oakland.
People left uplifted, many said this “conference” was unlike any they had ever been to. We attribute everyone in the room for making the convening a powerful and inspiring day where people learned and shared innovative ideas and put women’s health front and center.
Congresswoman Barbara Lee
P. Catlin Fullwood
Thank you to our sponsors:
AIDS Healthcare Foundation
Building Opportunities for Self –Sufficiency
Community Care Services
Family Violence Law Center
La Clinica de La Raza
Project Open Hand