BRIDGES OREGON COLLABORATES WITH WILLAMETTE HEALTH COUNCIL TO REPRESENT DEAF, DEAFBLIND AND HARD OF HEARING COMMUNITY IN 2024 MARION-POLK COMMUNITY HEALTH ASSESSMENT

Salem, Oregon – Bridges Oregon, a prominent advocate for community inclusion and health equity, is thrilled to announce its collaboration with Willamette Health Council to advocate for and represent the Deaf, DeafBlind, and Hard of Hearing (D/DB/HH) community in Marion and Polk Counties as part of the 2024 Marion-Polk Community Health Assessment (CHA).

This joint effort, focused on providing consultation support for and active participation in the CHA, underscores a shared commitment to ensuring the voices and perspectives of the D/DB/HH community in Marion and Polk counties are fully considered and integrated into community health initiatives. Bridges Oregon will orchestrate a focus group to incorporate D/DB/HH perspectives and work closely with Willamette Health Council to advocate for genuine representation of the D/DB/HH community.

“We are excited to join forces with Willamette Health Council to champion the needs and perspectives of the D/DB/HH community,” said Chad A. Ludwig, Executive Director of Bridges Oregon. “Through our collaboration, we will promote inclusivity and ensure that health initiatives truly reflect the diverse needs of our community.”

As part of this collaborative effort, Bridges Oregon will provide consultation support and expertise to ensure the meaningful participation of the D/DB/HH community in the CHA process. This will include facilitating focus groups, community forums, and outreach efforts to amplify the voices of the D/DB/HH community and advocate for their inclusion in decision-making processes related to community health.

“Representation matters, especially in matters of health and well-being,” added Chad. “Together with Willamette Health Council, we are committed to creating a more inclusive and equitable health landscape where every voice is valued and heard.”

About Bridges Oregon: Founded in 2017, Bridges Oregon is a linguistically and culturally specific and responsive statewide nonprofit organization for Oregonians who are Deaf, DeafBlind, and Hard of Hearing or face other communication barriers. It is in our mission to facilitate equity, inclusiveness, and to provide a bridge to opportunities through advocacy, education, and communication. Learn about our work at https://bridgesoregon.org.

About Willamette Health Council: Founded in 2019, the Willamette Health Council (WHC) is the community governance body for PacificSource Community Solutions, Marion County and Polk County Coordinated Care Organization (Marion-Polk CCO). Under this partnership model, the WHC collaborates with PacificSource to jointly manage the CCO and is responsible for much of the community-facing work. The WHC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Learn more about their work at www.willamettehealthcouncil.org.