Consider your Time – Your expertise is valuable but your time is short. Consider the amount of time you wish to dedicate to your areas LWP. Draft up a list of topics or subjects that you feel particularly interested in such as: emergency preparedness, asthma treatment plans, fitness programs etc. Once you have a list of topics, consider how you will most likely be able to influence these programs.
Contact the DOH/DOE – The Department of Health and Department of Education are great starting points for you to determine roles and programs which could benefit from your involvement and expertise. Often these organizations have needs identified or ideas for programs which you can contribute to.
Reach out to the School Board – After you’ve familiarized yourself with the local programs and initiatives contact your school board representatives and indicate your interest in volunteering. Many times you can attend a school board meeting and discuss your interests face to face after the meeting.
Leverage Existing Programs – Once you’ve been introduced to both the local agencies and school board and selected programs which you feel you can best assist with, spread the word about these programs.
Below are some other suggestions for your involvement:
- Serve as a committee member
- Act as an expert consultant
- Set office hours monthly to answer questions for those planning programs
- Endorse programs already in place
- Offer to write a brief article for the newsletter, website, or local newspaper supporting programs
- Place pamphlets in your waiting room
- Distribute papers to partners or other groups to include in welcome packets and new patient forms
- Offer to present at a workshop or health fair
- Volunteer to attend a school board meeting as an LWP representative
- Offer to lead a monthly community of practice meeting
- Work with teacher to offer a “class” on one of the health topics that interests you at the school
- Volunteer your time to mentor a student action committee on their program implementation
Kate Hoy, Center for Behavioral Economics in Child Nutrition Programs
Smarter Lunchroom Movement