Community capacity as means to improved health practices and an end in itself: Evidence from a multi-stage study

Carol Underwood, Marc Boulay, Gail Snetro-Plewman, Mubiana MacWan'Gi, Janani Vijayaraghavan, Mebelo Namfukwe, David Marsh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This three-phase study characterized, validated, and applied community capacity domains in a health communication project evaluation in Zambia. Phase I explored community capacity domains from community members' perspectives (16 focus groups, 14 in-depth interviews, 4 sites. These were validated in Phase II with 720 randomly selected adults. The validated domains were incorporated into a program evaluation survey (2,462 adult women, 2,354 adult men; October 2009). The results indicated that the intervention had direct effects on community capacity; enhanced capacity was then associated with having taken community action for health. Finally, community capacity mediated by community action and controlling for confounders, had a significant effect on women's contraceptive use, children's bed net use, and HIV testing. The results indicate that building community capacity served as a means to an end-improved health behaviors and reported collective action for health-and an end-in-itself, both of which are essential to overall wellbeing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)105-127
Number of pages23
JournalInternational quarterly of community health education
Volume33
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Education
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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