Since the end of last year, Stacy Pettigrew, Radix Center Executive Director, has been working closely with AVillage to gauge the health status of the residents at Ezra Prentice Homes, a 176 unit public housing complex located in between the Port of Albany and truck routes from the Port. The most exciting thing about this research project has been the involvement of Ezra residents. AVillage members recruited Ezra residents to serve as Resident Outreach Workers (ROWs). Beginning in January we created a training program, which included visits from Dr. David Carpenter, the Institute for Health and the Environment, University at Albany, Dr. Janine Jurkowski, School of Public Health, University at Albany, and Charles Welgde, Albany County Health Department. (Videos of their talks are available here.) The ROWs then began canvassing their neighbors, administering a brief survey on environmental health concerns and scheduling appointments for a longer survey. Graduate student volunteers and interns from the School of Public Health and the Albany College of Pharmacy have been administering a longer survey with residents that captures household health issues, satisfaction with medical care, depression scales, and fruit and vegetable consumption and healthy food access.
We look forward to using the data to connect residents with needed services. We also are interested in continuing this work to further examine pollution exposure levels and potential health consequences.
This project is in need of funding to complete this and future stages. Much of this work is currently being done on a volunteer basis. If you can help with funding, please contact Stacy@radixcenter.org. We are also looking for volunteers to help count truck traffic in from of the housing development. Contact us if you have free time to give!