Conversations that Raise Your Practice Game

Upcoming Conversations

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Special Guest Melodi Wynne: a community psychologist working with the Spokane Tribal Network

Melodi Wynne (sqelixw, Spokane Tribe of Indians (STOI)) is a community psychologist working with the Spokane Tribal Network (a nonprofit on the STOI reservation). Melodi also works on various other projects in Spokane country where she tries to answer every invitation with action. Wynne earned a BA in psychology at Eastern Washington University, and an MA and Ph.D. in community and cultural psychology at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa (UHM). She also holds a graduate certificate in conflict resolution from UHM. Melodi will talk about her journey to where she is, working within her own community, and the unique characteristics of that experience.

Past Conversations and Recordings

May 17th at 1pm (Eastern); 12pm (Central); 11am (Mountain); 10am (Pacific); 8am (Hawaii)

Revisiting the Definition of Community Psychology Practice with Dave Julian, Nicole Freund, Tom Wolff

This discussion will be kicked off by a special issue of the Global Journal of Community Psychology Practice - so we'd like your thoughts on the definition of Community Psychology Practice

The original definition of community psychology practice was efforts “to strengthen the capacity of communities to meet the needs of constituents and help them to realize their dreams in order to promote well-being, social justice, economic equity and self-determination through systems, organizational and/or individual change” (Julian, 2006)

In the intervening years much has emerged that requires the field to revisit this definition. This includes:

  1. The development of the Community Psychology Practices Competencies with books, and journals addressing their use.
  2. Increased focus on systems and policy change in CP Practice -including extensive writing on institutional and structural racism (see Gina Langhout on anti-racism, anti-sexism approaches and the need for self examination); inclusion of policy work in CP graduate training (See Ken Maton’s work) and most recently the focus on decolonialization from Pacifica (Nuria Ciofalo and others)
  3. New areas of community research that enhance and inform practice. If we are to rely on evidence based – what are we calling evidence? Are the lessons learned by practitioners considered evidence?
  4. Community engagement and community power in our CP Practice work with communities – see collaborating for equity and justice (below)
    1. Explicitly address issues of social and economic injustice and structural racism.
    2. Employ a community development approach in which residents have equal power in determining the coalition or collaborative’s agenda and resource allocation.
    3. Employ community organizing as an intentional strategy and as part of the process. Work to build resident leadership and power.
    4. Focus on policy, systems, and structural change.
    5. Build on the extensive community-engaged scholarship and research that show what works, that acknowledge the complexities, and that evaluate appropriately. From Wolff, Minkler, Wolfe, Berkowitz, Bowen, Butterfoss, Christens, Francisco and Lee (2017) Six principles for collaborating for equity and justice (NPQ 2016):

View this video on our YouTube channel here.

March 21st, 2019 at 1:00PM (ET)

Conversations That Raise Your Practice Game - W/ Nuria Ciofalo

Nuria Ciofalo, a community psychologist who has been devoted to co-constructing Indigenous Psychologies in collaboration with various communities from Mexico, will present her collaborative community project in the Mayan Lacandon Rainforest in the state of Chiapas that resulted in a book entitled, “Indigenous Psychologies in an Era of Decolonization” published by Springer Nature. Mayan Lacandon youths and adults co-authored this book sharing their knowledge on environmental management, ecotourism, education, mythologies, legends, poems, and photography. Nuria is Professor in the Community, Liberation, Indigenous, and Eco-Psychologies Specialization at Pacifica Graduate Institute. 

View this video on our YouTube channel here.

December 14th, 2018 at 12:00pm Eastern

Evaluating Health Equity Means Deep Analysis of Structural Racism, a Commitment to Social Justice, Strong Evaluation Skills with Kien Lee

Kien Lee is Principal Associate and Vice President at Community Science. She has expertise in designing and implementing capacity building and evaluation strategies that support progress toward equity. She has consulted with foundations, federal and local governments, and nonprofit organizations. She believes that doing this important work as a research, evaluator, and strategic advisor requires a deep analysis of structural racism, systems, and community, as well as the commitment to go beyond the call of duty.

During this call, Kien will:

  • Provide an overview of the knowledge, skills, and perspectives she has had to acquire to be effective to help advance health equity including a deep analysis of structural racism, community, as well as the commitment to go beyond the call of duty.
  • Share general reflections and lessons learned about the trials and tribulations of being a change agent in health equity research and evaluation.

Kien will also pose these questions to the group:

  • How and where do you think you can be most effective as a change agent for health equity?
  • How have or can you bridge research with practice in support of health equity?

View this video on our YouTube channel here.

November 15th, 2018 at 12:00pm eastern

"Can I have the best of both worlds?": Navigating Practice and Academia as an Early Career Community Psychologist with Kyrah Brown

Kyrah K. Brown currently works as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Kinesiology's public health program at the University of Texas at Arlington. She has expertise in community-based research and evaluation as well as practice experience (e.g., collaboration, capacity building, consulting) in the nonprofit and public health sector. She previously held positions with a County Health Department in Kansas and with a Consulting firm in Texas. She is committed to collaborating with communities to identify and address the social and systems-level factors that shape  health (and their subsequent birth outcomes) among women of color across the life course. She believes that in order to do this important work as a researcher one has to know how to roll up their sleeves and engage with the community.
During this call, Kyrah will: 
  • Provide an overview of her career trajectory in practice and academic settings
  • Share general reflections and lessons learned from her efforts to make practice and academic work more of a continuum rather than dichotomy in her career
During this call, Kyrah will also pose these questions to the group: 
  • What stage are you in your career and what have been the challenges or supports that you have encountered while trying to balance practice and academic work?
  • What does a practice-academic continuum 'look like' for others?

View this video on our YouTube channel here.

September 28th, 2018 at 12:00pm (Eastern)

Our first conversation was on Friday September 28 with Chris Sadeler, this year’s winner of the Award for Distinguished Contributions to Practice in Community Psychology.

Chris’ work in crime prevention from a community psychology perspective is innovative, successful, and it’s being replicated across Canada.

View this video on our YouTube channel here.