Powerful data, in-depth research, and wisdom from health equity champions can help us do our part in shaping healthier, more equitable, and more just communities.
That’s why, to kick off 2023, we’re sharing a brief roundup of resources that can help you advance health equity in your community.
These easy-to-navigate data generating sites can help build a stronger understanding of community conditions, amplify the experiences of residents, and inform efforts to advocate for policies, practices, and programs that foster health and wellbeing for all:
Given how people consume information in our fast-paced world, we recognize the power of a strong visual to inspire and educate. That’s why we’ve updated our popular “equity graphic” to help people understand the difference between equality and equity.
We surveyed readers of RWJF’s weekly newsletter, Advances, to inform the new image. Many respondents shared how useful the original visual was, but also offered suggestions to improve it.
We prioritized developing a clear graphic that was accessible and could be featured on the web, in social media, and in presentations. Our goal was to make it simple enough for a wide array of audiences to use and understand. We hope you find it thought-provoking and useful!
Several of our colleagues have authored or contributed to books that mix personal stories, on-the-ground experiences, and insightful ideas to remind us of the opportunity to make a difference in our mission to advance health equity.
From the deeply personal memoir, The Beautiful Darkness: A Handbook for Orphans by RWJF senior communications officer Joshunda Sanders, to the thought-provoking The Contagion Next Time by Boston University School of Public Health Dean Sandro Galea, to the children’s books, Black Girl Shining and Black Boy Shining by researcher, educator, and advocate Rhonda Tsoi-A-Fatt Bryant, these bold voices offer moving, memorable, empowering perspectives on advancing racial justice and improving health.
There's no one-size fits all approach to advocacy messaging and media. While storytelling can be a powerful tool for engaging the public, it doesn't always move state legislators to action and can even backfire. Leading scholars conducted two studies: the first looked at communication to the general public, and the second communication to state legislators. Their research reveals that policy narratives—short stories that paint a mental picture of what a problem is, who is affected, and how it came to be—are particularly effective at increasing support among the general public. However, the same narratives were not effective at increasing support among state legislators. In fact, they appeared to deepen existing political divides.
Explore the best ways to raise public will and political will around an issue. Learn more about what works with state legislators and access a handy messaging guide on storytelling for social change!
Najaf Ahmad, senior managing editor, highlights stories and perspectives on how the Foundation is advancing health equity in communities across the nation.
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