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H.E.L.P.S. Graduates First Class

Contact: Brad Duncan

Photo of Joseph L. Fink III
The most recent graduating class of the Lay Health Promoters program received their certificates of completion in a ceremony on June 6




June 12, 2003 (Lexington, Ky.) -- The Health Educators Linking People to Services (H.E.L.P.S.) program held a graduation ceremony for students in the Lay Health Promoters class on Thursday, June 5, at the Phillis Wheatley YWCA.

The H.E.L.P.S. program recruits community members to attend a 13-week series of classes on health promotion and health issues so that the students can take their knowledge back to their communities and provide health education. The program is sponsored by the North Central Area Health Education Center (a part of the University of Kentucky Area Health Education Program) in partnership with the Community Outreach Partnership Center, Lexington-Fayette Urban County Health Department, and the Phillis Wheatley YWCA.

“One of COPC’s goals is to promote a healthy community of healthy residents,” said Retia Walker, UK vice president for Academic Outreach and Public Service. “The Lay Health Promoters program is exciting because it fits into our Village Exchange Project where residents share their knowledge and expertise with their neighbors. This first group of Lay Health Promoters graduates are expected to promote healthy living in their families and communities.”

The program included a series of classes held for three hours one night a week for 13 weeks. Students, who can be anyone from professionals to stay-at-home moms, were instructed in such topics as personal hygiene, dental care, domestic violence, HIV/STDs, first aid, and diabetes. Instructors included a variety of people from doctors and nurses to students.

“We want to empower the community. We have all types of people, a very good mix, who take the classes,” said Rosa Martin, community programs director, North Central Area Health Education Center. “They have bonded together and have exhibited a strong desire to go into the community. That’s really important.”

For more information on registering for the next program, contact Martin at 859) 281-6086 or

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