Rodney Washington

Rodney Washington
Location: Jackson, Mississippi Cohort Start Year: 2018 Project Topics: Early Childhood, Maternal and Infant Health, Violence and Trauma Populations Served: At-Risk/Vulnerable Populations, Children and Families, Low-Income Communities
Associate Professor
Foundation for the Mid South

Rodney Washington is an Associate Professor of Early Childhood Education whose work focuses primarily on using data-driven, trauma-informed interventions to improve health outcomes for young children and families living in high poverty communities of Mississippi.

STRATEGIC INITIATIVE: Create a Community Partner Network to Disseminate COVID-19 Information in Leflore County, Mississippi
Emerging evidence suggests that African Americans are at higher risk for COVID-19. Using the CDC’s Crisis & Emergency Risk Communication, the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota has leveraged existing community-engaged research partnerships and utilizes these networks to help establish bidirectional communication related to COVID-19. My proposed model would replicate this concept by creating a community partner network to disseminate vital information related to COVID-19 in Leflore County, address questions, generate ideas, and learn of issues/barriers directly from community partners/members. Ultimately, this would create a community-driven conceptual model to collaboratively address those concerns. There has been commitment from the Mississippi Department of Health, Mississippi Valley State University, and local clergy and residents. Communication leaders would be developed at the local level to build capacity and become trusted sources of information on prevention and testing.

Rodney is a Mississippi native with a full commitment to supporting high poverty communities, much like the one he experienced in his own rearing. After working several years in juvenile corrections and counseling, Rodney has used those lessons to write population-specific interventions for vulnerable youth in underserved areas.

Click here to watch Rodney’s Legacy Project video.