2021 (Round 2) Campus-Community Research Incubator Awardees

Section 1

The Institute for Clinical and Translational Science is pleased to partner with the Orange County Healthcare Agency in funding Round 2 of the 2021 Campus-Community Research Incubator (CCRI) awards.

Predictors of Mental Health Needs and Service Utilization Among Adolescents in The Aftermath of COVID-19

Project Team:

Kate Kuhlman, PhD
Assistant Professor, UCI, Department of Psychological Science

Nazly Restrepo, MSW
Associate Director, Project Youth, Orange County Bar Foundation

Project Description:

The aims of this project are to 1) determine the mental health needs of adolescents with and without exposure to early life adversity (ELA), 2) determine the association between COVID-19 impact and symptoms of psychiatric illness in a vulnerable adolescent population, and 3) determine whether positive psychological resources (e.g., social support, optimism) or past participation in preventive Project Youth programming mitigates psychiatric symptoms. Further, the project aims to demonstrate a record of research collaboration between our lab and Project Youth OCBF to support ongoing and future clinical research among adolescents exposed to ELA. To do this, we will work with Project Youth staff to recruit adolescents for a single assessment of their sociodemographic background, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their family, their mental health, psychosocial resources that are associated with resilience to stress, and their health care utilization including programs at Project Youth.

A Community Needs Assessment of Nutrition Support and Resources Throughout the First 1000 Days of Life in Low-income Families

Project Team:

Karen Lindsay, PhD, RDN
Assistant Professor, UCI Department of Pediatrics, Susan Samueli Center for Integrative Medicine

Trina Robertson, MS, RDN
Project Manager, Dairy Council of California

Candice Taylor Lucas, MD, MPH
Associate Clinical Professor, Department of Pediatrics, UCI

Project Description:

In partnership with Dairy Council of California’s Let’s Eat Healthy movement, we will conduct a cross-sectional, qualitative project to assess the current status and gaps within nutritional education resources and services offered by local health care and community organizations during the first 1000 days of life (from conception to age 2). The overarching goal is to target this critical earlywindow of development to improve downstream child health outcomes by reducing food insecurityand preventing obesity and diet-related chronic diseases that are overrepresented in minority and low-income communities. By conducting a local community needs assessment, the objective of thisproject is to inform the development and strategic implementation of an integrated program across Orange County that supports increased equity in access to nutritious foods, evidence-based nutrition education and skills-based training, and psychosocial support to empower and equip families with necessary tools to optimize early-life nutrition and child development.

Environmental Justice Community Engaged Efforts Among Latino Residents in Boyle Heights

Project Team:

Connie Valencia, MPH
PhD Candidate, Department of Population Health and Disease Prevention Institution, UCI

Brittany Morey, PhD, MPH
Assistant Professor, Health, Society, & Behavior; Program in Public Health, UCI

Lucy Herrera, BA
Legacy LA, Boyle Heights, CA

Project Description:

The goal of this study is to develop a comprehensive understanding of factors that impact civic engagement among Latino residents that live in Boyle Heights, a marginalized community affected by environmental injustice. Boyle Heights is a predominantly low income, immigrant community that is surrounded by four major freeways and industrial factories. Under assembly bill 617, Boyle Heights was identified as environmental justice community in 2018. The environmental justice movement was developed to address environmental hazards experienced predominantly in communities of color. Environmental justice incorporates both fair treatment and meaningful engagement to promote the inclusion of people regardless of color, culture, and income to participate in efforts and discussions that enforce and support environmental laws and policies. Both fair treatment and meaningful engagement are core guiding principles to achieve true environmental justice and engage residents.