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The Odessa Chambliss Wellness Center Receives $100,000 Grant


Daytona Beach, FL – A $100,000 grant to the Odessa Chambliss Wellness Center is a gift that keeps on giving. The grant funded by the Board of Governors of the State University System of Florida is a part of the 2010 New Florida Initiative Scholar's Clustering Grant Program. Its aim is to foster collaborations among state institutions like the University of Florida and Florida A & M University in the areas of health, science and engineering. The overall goal of the program is to engage the state university system in the creation of high-skill, high-wage, knowledge-based employment opportunities.

Dr. Alma Dixon is Executive Director, Health Equity of the Odessa Chambliss Wellness Center and Professor of Nursing in the B-CU School of Nursing, the Principal Investigator from B-CU and will also serve as one of the Directors for the Institute. "I am delighted to join my colleagues at UF and FAMU in this important project that is in keeping with the legacy of our founder Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune and the commitment to civic engagement of our president, Dr. Trudie Kibbe Reed. Also the Institute is in keeping with the Wellness Center's mission to improve health literacy among target populations in order to decrease racial/ethnic disparities in illness, injury and death and to train lay community health workers."

The grant focuses on training unemployed, part-time and low-skilled workers to be Community Health Workers (CHWs) and to become Certified Health Empowerment Coaches (HECs) who are trained to implement a community-based Health-Smart Behavior Program for modifying and preventing obesity among children and families in the target communities of Alachua County (UF), Gadsden County (FAMU) and Volusia County (B-CU).

The $100,000 subcontract is giving long- term benefits of healthier communities, increased employment and a culturally sensitive health workforce for the state of Florida. This is the first major partnership among UF, FAMU and B-CU and is a giant step towards eliminating health disparities in the State of Florida.

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About Bethune-Cookman University

Founded in 1904 by Mary McLeod Bethune, Bethune-Cookman University (B-CU) today sustains her legacy of faith, scholarship and service through its relationship with the United Methodist Church and its commitment to academic excellence and civic engagement. B-CU offers baccalaureate degrees in 37 majors through six academic schools – Arts & Humanities; Business; Education; Nursing; Science, Engineering and Mathematics; and Social Sciences – and maintains intercollegiate athletic programs and instrumental and choral groups that have achieved national recognition. Located in Daytona Beach, B-CU is one of three private historically black colleges in the state of Florida. The institution boasts a diverse and international faculty and student body of more than 3,400.

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