As part of the Catalyst 606__ program, North Park University hosts on-campus presentations and lectures in addition to classroom excursions. Catalyst on Campus events aim to broaden students’ experience of the city and enrich campus culture with relevant dialogue. This past week, the Catalyst on Campus event was sponsored by the School of Nursing and entitled “Health in the City.” Representatives from the Lawndale Christian Health Center (LCHC) spoke on the importance of providing health care that is accessible to everyone, especially those who can’t afford insurance.
Heather Duncan, Assistant Professor of Nursing, opened the Catalyst event analyzing what poverty means, and its cause and effect on healthcare. “Poverty is both a cause and consequence of poor health,” she described as the latest statistics on the correlation between wealth and health rolled on the screen. The stability of a neighborhood depends on the resources available. When those with resources leave neighborhoods, they take with them the resources which aid in the stability of that neighborhood.
Lawndale Christian Health Center’s mission is to bring some stability and resources back into neighborhoods where these are not present. In addition to providing health care, LCHC provides other services such as Christian Life leadership and, through partnerships, aquaponics. These services are especially impactful as over 30% of LCHC’s patients are uninsured. In total LCHC provides 12 different services to communities across their five locations in Chicago.
During the seminar, the three representatives were able to speak about their different experiences from in-clinic care to assisting patients and others acquire affordable insurance. Two of the representatives, Stacy Atkins and Bennett Csukor are North Park Alums who began working at LCHC for several reasons. Both described their journeys to working at LCHC and their most impactful memories. For Stacy, it was her mom who won bingo games to pay for Stacy’s education to get her in the position she is in now. For Bennett, it was one of the first times he witnessed what it was like for people to truly live without healthcare; he now works to insure as many patients as possible.
LCHC has worked to provide affordable healthcare to those who don’t have access to it, and has been doing so for over 30 years. LCHC keeps its doors open and serves the public through donors and staff who uphold their values and work to provide the healthcare everyone deserves. Lawndale Christian Health Center has opportunities for students and recent graduates in the form of internships and jobs for both students in the medical field and those who are not. Working in healthcare isn’t only about being a nurse or doctor—something the representatives emphasized—but places like LCHC need marketers, technicians, and more. Contacting LCHC for internships is as easy as emailing Jeffery Chen.
Learn more about Catalyst on Campus and other Catalyst events on the Catalyst home page. Catalyst on Campus happens every week on Wednesdays.