As we move towards the Room Full of Stories, India’s First International Narrative Therapy Conference to be held from 13-18th Oct’16,  each week we will introduce you to the story tellers who will be sharing their stories of work with children, families, people and communities from varied contexts using narrative ideas and practices. This week we introduce you to Dr.America Bracho.

America-Bracho

America Bracho is the Chief Executive Officer of Latino Health Access (LHA). This organization has been committed since its inception to intervening at the community level, with comprehensive strategies that address the root causes of disease and despair through quality preventive services and educational programs, emphasizing responsibility and full participation in decisions affecting health. LHA engages and empowers the community, forges partnerships and advocates achieving health equity for all.

Dr. Bracho says “Our 23 year experience of community engagement has offered us a treasure of lessons that we continue to incorporate in our strategies as they become more realistic and effective. It has not been simple or easy.  In general we know that the presence of institutions in our communities sometimes makes it harder for regular people – for the whole community – to feel they are part of a process for generating solutions to issues that directly affect them. LHA, is a Community Based Institution that employs University Experts and Community Experts.  The engagement and inclusion of Community Experts as coworkers has offered and continue to offer endless opportunities for learning, unlearning, challenging assumptions, questioning privilege, re-defining our paradigm and refining/improving strategies in true collaboration with communities inside and outside the organization.”

In her TEDMED TALK’16 ‘What Happens when patients become leaders on the health team’ she shares stories of commitment and dedication of community health workers and stories of their knowledge and skills to heal the community they inhabit. You can listen to her talk on the following link: http://www.tedmed.com/talks/show?id=75778

America-Bracho_4

In her talk at The Room Full of Stories, America Bracho will share key lessons in the LHA practice, and how we have responded to questions such as:
How can we include people from the most vulnerable sectors in all aspects of the process in a way that honors their wisdom and strengths?  How can we create an organization committed to the philosophy that every person has the right and duty to articulate her thoughts, use her voice, and have the leading role in the changes she wants for her life? How do we address internal tensions, different personal and professional paradigms, issues of power and privilege to make our organization and team stronger?
In addition in this presentation America will offer examples of Health Promotion and Disease Prevention/Management programs as well as interventions to increase participation and accountability and to build healthier communities in Santa Ana, California. The role of adult and children community health workers/promotores and families in leading this change will be highlighted. The Principles of Practice that guide the work will be shared.

We are looking forward to witness Dr.Bracho’s stories of her work with Latino Health Axis at The Room Full of Stories, Mumbai, India. You can find out more about the Room Full of Stories at http://www.narrativeconference2016.in. You can also contact Ami Damani our conference coordinator at +91 9930 555019 or at ami.damani@ummeed.org.

Next week we will introduce David Epston and introduce  the story he will be sharing at The Room Full of Stories. Till then waiting to hear from you.

Stories, Hopes & Dreams,

Mental Health Team,

Ummeed Child Development Center.

Mumbai, India.

 

 

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