Preconception Peer Educators bring infant mortality prevention message to campus, community

PPEs and JIMA officers Jackie Hanson (L) and Grant Freiberg (R) volunteer at Rounds at the Grounds

The Preconception Peer Educators (PPE), in collaboration with the Jacksonville Infant Mortality Alliance (JIMA), have been busy with community and college campus events in observance of National Infant Mortality Awareness Month.

On September 18, two PPEs from Chamberlain College of Nursing, DeVry University presented information about infant mortality prevention to their peers on campus. They also provided information about how to join the PPE program. Because of their efforts, ten students signed up to become PPEs!

On September 28, several PPEs will be volunteering at the annual Family Health and Fitness Day at the Riverside Arts Market. They will be distributing information to patrons on infant mortality prevention, safe sleep and teen pregnancy prevention.

The PPE program also submitted a mini-grant proposal to the National Office of Minority Health requesting $300 for recruitment materials. The proposal was approved and will be used to create and purchase brochures for the program and to purchase a fabric tri-fold display board. These items will be used to display information about the program at community and/or campus events for recruitment purposes.

Next month, the PPEs and JIMA will be participating in community and campus activities in observance of October’s SIDS Awareness month.

The Preconception Peer Educator training is part of the Office of Minority Health’s “A Healthy Baby Begins With You” campaign, which began in 2007. The purpose of the program is to enlist college students as peer educators not only on college campuses but also in the community at large, to help disseminate essential preconception health messages.

The JIMA is a collaboration between Preconception Peer Educators, community agencies and the Healthy Start Coalition that was launched following a workshop held by the federal Office of Minority Health in September 2012.