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This project examines the connections between community psychology and faith-based community development. We investigate whether and how 4 major principles of community psychology-neighboring, sense of community, empowerment, and citizen participation-are found in the theory and philosophy of practice of the Christian Community Development Association (CCDA), a national faith-based community development network. We employ content analysis of four official CCDA publications to identify whether and how these four principles are embedded in the organization's espoused principles of practice. Our findings are as follows: (a) All four principles are found within CCDA theory and philosophy of practice, with the greatest emphasis on neighboring and sense of community and a less robust application of empowerment and citizen participation; (b) CCDA primarily focuses on the individual-level impact of these principles; and (c) CCDA Bases their application of these principles in Christian scripture and tradition. Our results indicate that the field could be strengthened by examining religious approaches to these principles and considering how organizations engage these concepts in both the theory and the practice. Additionally, faith-based organizations may foster a more effective application of these concepts in their social change efforts by partnering with community researchers and practitioners.
© 2018 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.
This study describes the ways in which two African-American churches discuss adolescent sexual health topics. Six focus groups were conducted in two churches in Flint, Michigan, that reported no formal sexual health programming for their congregants. Three themes emerged to highlight the different perspectives about the role of churches in adolescent sexual decision-making and sexual health education: (1) churches as sources of sexual information, (2) churches as complex communities, and (3) recommendations for sexual education in churches. Participant responses suggest that churches can and should serve a resource for sexual health information. Implications for practice and research are discussed.
BACKGROUND - Blood transfusion therapy is an established treatment for primary and secondary prevention of strokes in children with sickle cell disease (SCD), a disease that predominantly affects African Americans. African American blood donors are more likely to have compatible minor red blood cell antigens for children with SCD who routinely receive transfusions. This study tested the hypothesis that when informed at church about the importance of blood donation, African Americans will have a higher than expected rate of first-time blood donation compared to the general population.
STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS - The Sickle Cell Sabbath Program was developed to increase awareness about SCD and the importance of blood donations within the African American faith community. Church involvement in the program included a 5-minute scripted educational session about SCD that included the importance of blood donations followed by a blood donor drive that was hosted by the church.
RESULTS - Thirteen African American churches sponsored 34 blood drives from 2003 through 2006. Each church sponsored at least two blood drives. Approximately 1200 donors participated in the sickle cell blood drives. The majority of the donors were first-time donors and represented a greater than expected first-time donor rate when compared to first-time donors in the metropolitan St Louis area, 60 percent (422 of 699) and 12.2 percent (21,516 of 175,818), respectively (p = 0.001).
CONCLUSION - An educational program that engages the African American faith community more than quadruples the rate of expected first-time blood donors when compared to the general community over this 4-year period.
After a genomewide screen in the Hutterites was completed, the IL4RA gene was examined as the 16p-linked susceptibility locus for asthma and atopy. Seven known variants and one novel variant, representing all nonsynonymous substitutions in the mature protein, were examined in the Hutterites; on the basis of studies in the Hutterites, outbred white, black, and Hispanic families were genotyped for selected markers. All population samples showed evidence of association to atopy or to asthma (P values.039-.0044 for atopy and. 029-.0000061 for asthma), but the alleles or haplotypes showing the strongest evidence differed between the groups. Overall, these data suggest that the IL4RA gene is an atopy- and asthma-susceptibility locus but that variation outside the coding region of the gene influences susceptibility.
Approximately 10% of newborns with congenital hypothyroidism are unable to convert iodide into organic iodine. This iodide organification defect has a prevalence of 1 in 40,000 newborns and may be caused by defects in the thyroid peroxidase enzyme (TPO), the hydrogen peroxide-generating system, the TPO substrate thyroglobulin, or inhibitors of TPO. We identified a high incidence of severe hypothyroidism due to a complete iodide organification defect in the youngest generation of five nuclear families belonging to an inbred Amish kindred. Genealogical records permitted us to trace their origin to an ancestral couple 7-8 generations back and to identify an autosomal recessive pattern of inheritance. Initial studies of homozygosity by descent using two polymorphic markers within the TPO gene showed no linkage to the phenotype. In fact, 4 of 15 affected siblings from 2 of the nuclear families were heterozygous, resulting in homozygosity values of 73% and 53% in affected and unaffected family members, respectively. A genome-wide homozygosity screen using DNA pools from affected and unaffected family members localized the defect to a locus close to the TPO gene. Linkage analysis using 4 additional polymorphic markers within the TPO gene reduced the number of homozygous unaffected siblings to zero without altering the percent homozygosity initially found in the affected. Sequencing of the TPO gene revealed 2 missense mutations, E799K and R648Q. TPO 779K was found in both alleles of the 11 affected homozygotes, both mutations were present in each of the 3 affected compound heterozygotes, and there were no TPO mutations in 1 subject with hypothyroidism of different etiology. These results demonstrate the power of the DNA pooling strategy in the localization of a defective gene and the pitfalls of linkage analysis when 2 relatively rare mutations coexist in an inbred population.