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Equity Through Interconnection: Exploring a Systems Approach to Community Health and Social Change

June 23 @ 9:00 am - 11:00 am


Workshop Description:

Imagine a community where every citizen has access to healthy food, excellent healthcare, and world-class education. Imagine if zip codes did not determine life expectancy. This workshop is designed to be relevant to a broad audience and introduce fundamental concepts that will enable participants to view equity, particularly in community health and social change, differently by utilizing a systems perspective.

In community health, systems thinking is a crucial skill and powerful tool to help in developing, executing, and evaluating programs that address the social determinants of health and overall wellbeing. It helps create better solutions to organizational or community challenges. When a result is contingent on several interacting and adapting parts and participants, traditional statistical tools cannot be utilized to assess or anticipate it. New techniques for evaluating coalitions and other community-driven initiatives are needed to account for the complexity of collaborative activities and inform continuous innovation.

This workshop requires no previous systems experience. Individuals of all levels are invited to attend this highly interactive, collaborative workshop. Participants can expect to gain a foundational understanding of systems theory, be able to create system maps, and access tools for integrating diverse views and synthesizing them into a framework or model that can describe and anticipate how systems could react to change.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Define systems thinking and key concepts, including:
    • Systems
    • Equity
    • Social change
    • Context
    • Ubuntu
  2. Identify core elements and habits of systems thinking
  3. Understand how systems thinking can help advance health equity
  4. Explore tools to integrate systems thinking into existing frameworks for equity

Featured Speaker

Will Rucker, MA

Compassionate Las Vegas

Will Rucker is gifted to communicate with clarity, compassion, and creativity. He gives voice to what is possible while influencing the culture and developing the systems required to achieve it practically. Will brings a unique perspective of the world, and our places within it, to his mission of cultivating a global culture centered on compassion.

Will is engaged in local, statewide, and national platforms advancing socio-spiritual transformation efforts in restorative justice, health equity, and humanity first initiatives. Nearly twenty years of experience in leading individuals, teams, and organizations to extraordinary success informs his unique approach to change. Will’s educational background includes certifications in Cultural Transformation, Leadership, Interpersonal Skills, and Compassion. Will also holds a master’s degree in Executive Leadership.

Currently, Will is honored to serve his community by leading the development and expansion of health promotion programs for a national non-profit organization. He also serves as the co-leader of Compassionate Las Vegas, a grassroots organization whose mission is to make Las Vegas a more compassionate place to live, learn, work, and play. In addition, Will is a current board member of several non-profits, including the Interfaith Council of South Nevada, Community Partners for Better Health, Compassionate Las Vegas, and the Nevada Minority Health & Equity Coalition.

Funding Disclosure: *This project is supported by the Nevada State Division of Public and Behavioral Health through Grant Number 1 NH75OT000092-01-00 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the Division nor the CDC. Any activities performed under this sub-award shall acknowledge the funding was provided through the Division by Grant Number 1 NH75OT000092-01-00 from the CDC.


June 23
9:00 am - 11:00 am
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