Free Research Paper On Knowing My Community
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This paper focus on the assessment of North Albion Collegiate Institution and its surround community. The neighbourhood is located in Toronto Ward-1, and one of the neighbourhoods which this paper will emphasize on is Mount Olive-Silverstone-Jamestown. This paper described the method used to gather up the important data, the physical and social environments, issues that affect t my target population. The recommendations that can be used to improve the health of the community are also provided
Community is describe as a group of people living in a given geographical area, sharing common moral code, beliefs, and social environment (Stamler &Yiu, 2012). Hence, the health of a community is not only defined by the physical health of members, but also by its physical environment ,economical development, cultural and recreational facilities, and its ethnic diversity (Kinder,&Cashman, 1998). North Albion Collegiate (ward 1) shares its borders with boarders with ward 2 on the Southern side, ward 7 on the northern side. The ward has a total population of 61,315 with the higher percentage being young people of below 20 years and older adults of above 65 years. The immediate surrounding area of North Albion collegiate is an area comprises of predominantly Panjabi and Gujarati population. Compare to Toronto's average, the number of single parents is 25% while that of Toronto is 21%, and couples with children is 7% higher than of Toronto's couples (City of Toronto ward profile, 2011).
Compare to Toronto's average, ward 1 hold about 7% higher number of people living in row/townhouses (City of Toronto ward profiles, 2011). Majority of the students don't come from houses, this was confirmed when we conducted our two windshield surveys which took place on Monday morning and Tuesday afternoon. According to school's public nurse, majority of the students are brought to school by their parents with a private cars. She also said to us that a lot of the residents in the houses are retired adults whose children have moved to a new developing environment.
North albion collegiate
North albion collegiate is a multicultural community having students and staff from different parts of the world. According to TDSD's reported in 2014, there were 574 male and 476 female students out of which 683 of them spoke primary language other than English. There are 67 of the students living in Canada for 2 years or less while 89 of the students were living in Canada for 3-5 years . Community is viewed as a group of people that live to share common vision, action towards obtaining an ultimate goals (MacQueen, McLellan, Metzger, kegeles &al, 2001).
Data collection method
Various methods of data collection procedures were used including qualitative, quantitative methods and subjective interviews of students and other community stakeholders. Before applying any interviews, we have use non-contact data collection ways like the websites of: Statistics Canada, Toronto public health, Toronto district school board, Amesbury middle school and additional paper documents within the school. Formal interviews and informal conversations were used for verbal data collection methods through which students were able to freely express their health concerns. The windshield survey (minimal contact method) we did was our primary way of collecting information about the physical surrounding of the community.
The community assessment appeared a daunting task and I was especially apprehensive because of being a recent immigrant in Canada. In retrospect, though, as I reflect on my task of community assessment of the Canadian middle school and the community I realize that it was a pleasant and educative challenge. In addition, the community assessment proved a fun and enriching experience.
Health issues affecting my community
Entrusted with the task of community assessment I employed two investigative approaches to find out the main causes of the health threats facing the community. The first was conducting informal interviews of the school staff (the teachers, the school’s public nurse, the student councilor and the vice president) and the students of North Albion Collegiate Institution. The students were encouraged to present their concerns about health issues affecting their academic performance. In addition to conducting informal interviews I also compiled important data concerning the health threats facing the community through previously conducted surveys (Appendices # 3). By employing both these methods I was able to discover the student’s unique perspective concerning the issue of health. The investigation results showed two main areas of concern. The first was health issues because of the diet and the second because of psychological problems. This paper, however, focuses on the psychological or mental aspects of students’ health. In addition, the paper also discusses the relation between mental health of the students and the major societal determents like class, income and status of their families.
In a recent survey conducted by the Toronto district school board (TDSB), most of the teenager students cited lack of sleep as the major reason for the lack of concentration and of anxiety and stress that ultimately resulted in poor academic performance (Alphonso, 2014). A ninth grade student when interviewed responded that as of routine he does not go to bed before 1AM or 2 AM in the morning. He is either busy playing games or watching TV. During the same interview this fact was also confirmed by two of the teachers. According to them majority of students are unfocused and sleepy during the classes due to lack of adequate sleep. In addition, according to a survey conducted by TDSB in 2011/12, 73% of the ninth grader students exhibit signs of stress because of worry about their poor academic performance. About 25% of the students were nervous or anxious most of the time (TDSB, 2014). In light of these findings the TDSB has launched a big awareness campaign about the mental health issues affecting the North Albion community. The slogan of the campaign initiated by the TDSB is “top the Stigma” and it especially targets the high school students of the community. The aims of this program are to disseminate information about the mental or psychological health risks. Furthermore, the campaign provides the students and all the other stake-holders with the awareness and the knowledge to tackle the issue of mental health faced by the community.
This program is important because of the lack of important knowledge among the students concerning the mental health. According to the findings of a survey 67% of the middle school students were unaware of both her the symptoms and the causes of the mental problems. For instance the students did not know that the mental health prblems like stress, mood swings, and depression ere due to biomedical factors (Wahl, Susin, Lax, Kaplan & Zatina , 2012). According to the teachers another main cause of stress in students specially the twelfth grade students was the transition or the move from the high school level to the college. This move from the school environment to that of the college was a major cause of the stress because of the high expectation associated with them and their fear that they will not be able to fufill these expectations.
The social determinants like class, status and income of the students’ families are also very important factors regarding the mental health status of the students. The survey showed that only a small number (3%) of students that attended the North Albion Collegiate Institution belonged to rich households while a large majority of the students (83%) belonged to families that were not able to adequately meet their demands. (TDSB census report, 2012) (Appendices #2, Page # 5). This often resulted in depression, anxiety and stress that inevitably affected their academic performance (Fazel, Panter & Stein, 2012). In order to deal effectively with this sensitive issue of mental health of the students because of a number of factors ranging from the lack of sleep to economic constraints faced by their families, respectively a cross-sectorial intervention is direly needed. The collaborative intervention on behalf of the community, the school, the patents and the government is essential to overcome the problem of deteriorating mental health of the students. Each individual in the community must play his part in addressing this sensitive issue as it concerns the welfare and well- being of the future of the community.
Alphonso, C (2014). Toronto Public Schools to get Training on Mental Health. The Globe and Mail, Jan 28th, 2014. 26th Feb, 2014. Retrieved from http://www.theglobe and mail. com/news/toronto/toronto-public-schools-to-get-training-in-mental-health/article16539334/.
Fazel, M., Reed, R. V., Panter-Brick, C., & Stein, A. (2012). Mental health of displaced and refugee children resettled in high-income countries: Risk and protective factors. The Lancet, 379(9812), 266-282. Retrieved fromhttp://search.proquest. com.ezproxy.library.yorku.ca/docview/920036229?accountid=15182
Kinder, G. L., & Cashman, S. B. (1998). A community oriented definition of the health workforce and core competencies. Journal of Interprofessional Care, 12(2), 141. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy. library.yorku.ca/ docview/221127853?accountid=15182
MacQueen, K. M., McLellan, E., Metzger, D. S., Kegeles, S., & al, e. (2001). What is community? an evidence-based definition for participatory public health. American Journal of Public Health, 91(12), 1929-38. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.library.yorku.ca/docview/215112660?acco untid=15182
Stamler, L.L., & Yiu, L. (2012). Community health nursing, a Canadian perspective. Toronto, Ontario: Pearson Canada INC.
Toronto district school board, (2012). Toronto district school board: Amesbury middle school Census report,
Toronto district school board (2014). TDSB Launches New Mental Health Initiative, City News Toronto. 28th Feb, 2014.
Yau, M., O’Reilly, J., Kozovski, K., Rosolen, L., & Archer, B. (2011). 2011 grades 9-12 student census: School report (School Report). Toronto District School Board: Toronto District School Board.
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