Our public health programs focus on population level and individual preventive public health such as vaccine promotion in social media, vaccine events, wellness sessions, and providing referrals for clinical and hospital care. Public health activities are generally led by professional nurses and medical staff within our various communities.
During the severe Covid-19 period, several of our communities, including Nigeria Sierra Leone, and Liberia conducted Covid-19 education campaigns and later held multiple Covid vaccine for community members.
The youth of the Sierra Leone community continue to lead efforts to combat commercial tobacco use and targeting of our youth with tobacco and vaping products by Big Tobacco Companies.
Building Community Wealth
West African communities experience same economic disparities as African American and other BIPOC groups due to the deep roots of systemic racial injustice. WAC is working to leverage the significant intellectual resources within our communities to educate and train, and prepare community members to be more competitive in the workforce and in creating sustainable businesses.
Some WAC communities have business training programs that help entrepreneurs develop strategic business plans that include market research and financial planning to help small businesses succeed.
Other wealth building efforts include retraining and uptraining to improve individual skills and workforce competitiveness.
Promoting Civic Engagement
We believe that eliminating social disparities and enabling community growth requires multi-generational involvement in local and statewide civic dialogues. We encourage youth to be involved, learn how government works, how change occurs through policy, systems and environments.
Students visit city councils and the state capitol, and hold talks with policymakers and law makers.
Culture and Cultural Preservation
Culture is simultaneously static and dynamic. The core values of culture, and the historical elements of food, clothing, and history telling do not change. However, environments change, technology changes societal habits, and generations displaced by migration and immersion in a larger culture will influence one’s culture.
The preservation of West African culture and value is at risk with each generation born outside of Africa and immersed in a large, diversified culture such as in Minnesota.
Our Symposium on Culture is part of the effort to preserve, promote and nurture cultural transference from generation to generation. In 2023, we will follow up with a Youth Forum that builds upon the discussions and questions from the 2022 Symposium.