The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has awarded a $4.35 million grant to the Prevention Research Center (PRC) at the Arnold School of Public Health.
The PRC at the University of South Carolina’s Arnold School was established through funding by the CDC in 1993, and has been funded continuously since that time. The new award will enable Dr. Sara Wilcox, a professor in the Department of Exercise Science, and her colleagues to implement and disseminate a faith-based program, called Faith, Activity and Nutrition (FAN). Designed to increase physical activity and encourage healthy eating in South Carolina, the program will have an emphasis on rural and underserved populations.
Wilcox and her colleagues developed the FAN program with funding from a National Institutes of Health grant in 2006. The new funding will allow Wilcox, working with collaborators at USC, Clemson University, Fairfield Behavioral Health Services, the State Baptist Young Woman’s Auxiliary Health Ministry and the S.C. Conference of the United Methodist Church, to implement and evaluate the program in South Carolina churches. The grant also will involve working with DHEC and other community groups in the areas of physical activity and healthy eating.
The first phase of the study will focus on Fairfield County, and the second phase will expand the FAN program statewide.
Some of the primary responsibilities of the new grant scheduled to start September 30, 2014 will be to:
- Attend Fairfield Community Health Partners meetings and advise the USC PRC on this research project
- Recruit two community health educators to be trained in how to deliver the Faith, Activity, and Nutrition program to churches.
- Participate in the training of the community health educators.
- Recruit and train 60 churches to be trained in Faith, Activity, and Nutrition: 40 in Year 2 and 20 in Year 3.
- Deliver brief technical assistance to the trained churches
- Work with trained churches to obtain implementation plans.
- Help coordinate USC PRC site visits and interviews with churches, leaders and USC PRC