The Center for Native Health Partnerships was developed in response to Native American community members interest in starting community-based participatory research (CBPR) projects in their communities, and in response to researchers who approached the Center Co-Directors to learn how to work successfully with Native communities.
What is community based participatory research?
CBPR is a collaborative approach to research that equitably involves all partners in the research process and recognizes the unique strengths that each brings. CBPR begins with a research topic of importance to the community with the aim of combining knowledge and action for social change to improve community health and eliminate health disparities.
-W.K. Kellogg Scholars 2001
Aims of the Center
The central practical purpose of the Center is to grow and change the way that research has historically been conducted with tribal nations by bringing together researchers and communities to establish trust, share power, foster co-learning, enhance strengths and resources, build capacity, and examine and address community-identified needs and health problems. These institutional and behavioral changes are critical to achieving the ultimate outcomes sought through this project: improvements in Native Americans health and reduction of health disparities. The central research aim of this project is to determine how best, at the end of 5 years, the Center can continue to build the power of Native American communities in Montana to utilize available resources to address health needs and build capacity for health improvements.