How the Hammonton Health Coalition is Connecting Latinx Community Members with the Resources They Need
Helping community members connect with the resources they need in the language they understand is one of the main challenges the Community Connectors have faced during the pandemic. So this year, the Hammonton Health Coalition (HHC) helped local organizations translate their communications to Spanish, from information about local bus routes to food distribution event flyers. The Connectors also started offering two new services to the community: A helpline in Spanish that provides information and support to the community, and in collaboration with Allies in Caring, a navigation service at Con-Vivir Wellness Hub to link people with the community services they need. The helpline receives from 10 to 15 calls per week from people seeking information, and the Con-Vivir Wellness Hub space also provides a supportive environment to Latinx youth looking for homework help after school, as some of their parents don’t speak English.
Another goal of the Community Connectors was to find financial resources to support the community members whose primary source of income was affected by the pandemic. In collaboration with local organizations, businesses and families, they were able to fundraise $8,000 toward that goal. In addition, more than 300 Hammonton families benefited from their food distribution program, and eight high school students received $400 grants as part of the Connectors’ Hispanic Leadership Scholarships Program this year.
Finally, helping people reconnect with their community members held an important place on the Connectors plan this year. In collaboration with Allies in Caring, they co-hosted community events including Hispanic Heritage Celebration and community webinars to share information about the COVID-19 vaccine and locally available college scholarships. They also helped more than 150 community members register for the COVID-19 vaccine.
The pandemic has taken away so many things from us. However, it has also prompted us to rethink how we can be there for each other. The Connectors have played an essential role in Hammonton, bringing information and resources to community members who usually don’t have access due to language and cultural barriers. To learn more about the Connectors’ work, please visit the Hammonton Health Coalition Facebook page.