STAGE IV.Concluding the Session
All good things must come to an end and the final session must have clarity. Have the participants evaluate the entire process. The participants will be thirsty for the next steps. Be sure you know where things will be going. If at all possible, set a date 2 months from the last session to reconvene. At the 2-month meeting, have a final summary report of the CHPP process and recommendations available to review with the group. Consider inviting the press. E-mail the report to all members of the group that are unable to attend the 2-month follow-up meeting. Answer the following questions in the report:
- What was the overall impression of the group concerning the CHPP process?
- What conclusions were drawn from the task force reports?
- What was learned from the reports, the indication of the desired next steps?
- Who is interested on continuing the process, perhaps in a lobbying, fundraising or in a policy role?
- When does the planning for the campaign, task force mission, grant, etc. become final?
- When and how will the group hear from you again? E-mail becomes vital as it is an inexpensive and easy method to communicate with many people at one time.
It is important to keep the participants of the CHPP regularly updated and informed, even if they do not become members of your Community Advisory Board. The former participants may be willing to help with a special project, act as an advocate at their school or workplace, offer to contact specific groups and individuals, or even just attend public health events.
Session Real Life
Goal: The goal of real life is to take the recommendations made by the Task Forces and implement them.
Now, real life begins. After completing the 12-session CHPP ask for and seek volunteers to remain with the project as members of a Community Advisory Board. This Board will be charged with carrying out the plans and recommendations derived from the Community Health Participatory Planning process. This group will review the task force reports, report to the media, raise funds, plan a campaign, provide ideas, be influential in gaining the support of community officials, plan the next CHPP, etc. This group can seek further legitimization by the community (“ordained” by the city or county), become a committee of another group, formally establish itself as an advocacy organization, or find another way to establish itself as an action-oriented entity.