Skip to Local Navigation
Skip to Content
California State University, Long Beach

Retention and Productivity of Community Health Leaders

Ms. Carol Canjura served as the project coordinator for this project. This study was built upon a previous collaboration between our office, the University of Southern California (USC), Long Beach Department of Health & Human Services (LBDHHS) and members of the Partnership for the Public’s Health (PPH) project in Long Beach and the GEM Project in the San Gabriel Valley. PPH and the GEM are community projects involving primarily monolingual Spanish-speaking residents who have volunteered to be “health leaders” in an effort to improve community health. The study evaluated the impact of incentives on the retention, productivity and satisfaction of volunteer community health leaders. The feedback from 26 Health Leaders in Long Beach who received monetary and non-monetary incentives on alternating six month schedules for their work was compared with 26 GEM Health Leaders who were not given incentives. Demographically, the two groups of leaders are similar, with close to 100% women, 94% Latino, and more than 50% with less than a high school education level. Every six months over a period of two years, both groups were asked to complete an audio computer assisted self-interview (ACASI) questionnaire to track their satisfaction, attitudes, participation and intentions as community health leaders. Both groups of Health Leaders reported high levels of satisfaction throughout their participation in the study irrespective of their level of participation and receipt of incentives. Preliminary results indicate a significant difference in levels of productivity between periods of monetary and non-monetary incentives among the Long Beach Health Leaders. Each group of Health Leaders was presented with the preliminary findings and given a certification of appreciation at their respective events where they were recognized for their community work and participation in the study.