Get Involved with CCHE Community Engagement

CCHE Community Engagement

CCHE creates strategic partnerships with neighbors in Madison to advance health equity. Our approach to community relations prioritizes relationship building, meeting people where they are, and sharing assets. CCHE’s community-academic partnerships have resulted in collaborative teaching and student service learning opportunities, research to address specific community health and wellness priorities, and programs to advance the careers of health equity scholars and the health and health outcomes of members of underresourced communities. Current activities underway in community are primarily led by Sarah Esmond and Tyson Jackson.

The goal of our Get Involved process is to make it easier for faculty, staff, members of student organizations and others on campus to contribute their expertise via volunteer service and/or providing education/training that is aligned with the goals and priorities of our community partners. Check out our ‘menu’ of curated expertise available for community audiences.

Get Involved

Volunteer in the Community

Community organizations we work with are often hosting events and looking for volunteers to assist. This could be a one-time thing or an ongoing opportunity. We believe it is important to demonstrate that you care before others care what you know.

Are you ready to build relationships with Madison community leaders?

I want to get involved

Share Health Info and/or Education in the Community

We have opportunities to connect academic partners with diverse community partners for presentations and discussions geared to community audiences. This could be a one-time offering or an ongoing opportunity.

Do you have expertise in a specific field or on a health/wellness issue that you’re interested in sharing with community audiences?

I want to get involved

Community Project Highlights

In Summer 2021, CCHE Associate Director Olayinka Shiyanbola and CCHE staff began info gathering about how Community Health Workers (CHWs) are included in research activities. CHWs are essential workers playing a critical role in public health. CCHE intends to serve as a convener of stakeholders to examine how academic health centers can employ CHWs as part of their workforce in serving neighbors and participating in community-engaged research. This newly developing segment of CCHE’s portfolio builds on Dr. Shiyanbola’s experience utilizing Community Peer Partners in diabetes research. More to come in 2022!

More >> Partnering to Advance Community Health Workers in Dane County

Tyson JacksonIn Fall 2021, CCHE Research Ambassador Tyson Jackson initiated an exciting pilot effort on the north side of Madison, the Northside Neighborhood Health Council. This new Council includes a dozen representatives from local neighborhood centers, community centers, Madison Metropolitan School District, Public Health Dane County, local food pantries, and city department representatives of Madison libraries and the community development division. The goal of the Council is to create collective efforts between the services providers in the north Madison community related to health awareness and access. The group convenes monthly and is now planning to launch an inaugural Council-sponsored event in Summer 2022. Stay tuned!

More >> Spotlight: Tyson Jackson


I have worked with the CCHE for the past year, and they have been an excellent resource for my work in community outreach. They have provided thoughtful suggestions for partnerships and continued support throughout my time working with them. I am grateful for the CCHE!

-Grace Blitzer, MD
Department of Human Oncology, UW SMPH

Through my conversations and engagement with CCHE and Sarah Esmond, I have significantly expanded my awareness of other health-focused networks and initiatives in Wisconsin. They have served to facilitate connections and start dialogues that have, in turn, generated new opportunities for partnerships and collaboration. My sensitivity to and appreciation of work going on adjacent communities has deepened, improving the ability of my own team to serve Wisconsin residents.

-Allison Espeseth, MS
Director, Covering Wisconsin

The support, insight, and collaboration that CCHE has provided me has been invaluable. Not only have they provided relevant resources necessary for me to grow my nonprofit, but they have done so with an amazing work ethic, curiosity, and compassion. This partnership has led to the potential for numerous positive outcomes and their guidance has helped to make sure we live our mission centered on racial equity, positive partnerships, sustainability, and relevant impact on our community.

-Jamie Pekarek Krohn, LPC, CYT
Director, Be Well Madison

Our CCHE teammates provided an outstanding combination of knowledge and actionable insight that was invaluable in integrating complex components required to advance our CDC application. Our goals were clearly and thoughtfully addressed through timely input and easy access to resources, including connections to other UW centers and coordinating meetings with relevant personnel. We look forward to growing our relationship with the crucial resource of the CCHE, and we are grateful for continued opportunities to collaborate that it provides.   

-Nasia Safdar, MD, PhD
Director of ICTR Investigator-Initiated & Multisite Research

Our involvement with CCHE has continuously opened doors, and provided the connections to the communities we were missing when we first began recruitment for our study. From facilitating meetings with members of different community organizations, and sitting down (virtually) and providing constructive and actionable feedback regarding recruitment efforts and strategies, the CCHE Team has provided invaluable knowledge and learning opportunities for our team to grow as individuals and health researchers.

-Voils Research Team, Partner2Lose
PI: Corrine Voils, PhD

My students and I are so grateful for the assistance and support from CCHE and their research ambassadors. Without their assistance, this project would not have been successful. This experience increased my students’ appreciation for community-based research and brought back the momentum for my students to complete this project.

-Maichou Lor, PhD, RN

Curated Expertise Available

CCHE prioritizes the use of campus and other resources to support community-led strategies to address inequities in health and health outcomes. Check out our ‘menu’ of curated expertise available for community audiences!