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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Center for Community Engagement



The Center for Community Engagement promotes and supports community-engaged research, teaching and learning in partnership with communities and organizations throughout Los Angeles, regionally, nationally and globally. The Center facilitates faculty and student work that integrates sustained, reciprocal engagement with the public and helps transform UCLA’s mission to support the co-creation, co-dissemination, co-preservation and co-application of knowledge for the betterment of society.

Center for Community Engagement

There are 18 publications in this collection, published between 2018 and 2021.
Astin Community Scholars Research Papers (5)

The Address of Psychological Impacts of Diabetes in MEND's Diabetes Health Education Program

With a large population of their community facing diet-related illnesses, a non-profit organization in Pacoima, California, Meet Each Need with Dignity (MEND), attempts to alleviate the stressors of diabetes on these individuals through their educational programs. While their Diabetes Health Education seems to address the physical health component of diabetes, thisresearch was conducted to explore how MEND is addressing the psychological component to this disease. As MEND’s clients fall under the governmental poverty line, affecting their access to healthcare, MEND serves as a source of relief and hope for individuals facing hardship. Thisposition of opportunity MEND holds to leave a sustainable impact on these individuals is endless and should be utilized to create positive changes within these individuals.

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Community Engagement and Social Change Minor Capstone Papers (13)

State Nursing Staffing Laws Related to Hospital Acquired Infections (HAIs)

High nurse to patient ratios have been problematic across the United States for nurse and patient outcomes. Title 42 of the Code of Federal Regulations, which calls for “adequate numbers” of staffing, is ill-defined leading states to act. This research analyzes the various nurse staffing models that strive to achieve better patient outcomes. How do various state nurse staffing laws in acute care settings correlate with health outcomes regarding hospital acquired infections (HAIs)? There has been much research on the impacts of this law over time within California, and the literature is promising. This research suggests favorable patient outcomes with nurse empowered and directed staffing plans for specific units compared to laws that strictly enforced ratios for all hospitals, at all times, and under all circumstances.

Racial Dynamics Among Clients in Residential Substance Use Disorder Treatment Facilities

Previous studies have outlined the importance of culturally competence practices, such as racial match between client and counselor and counselors’ knowledge of racial issues, for racial minorities who seek treatment for substance use disorders. Racial identities play a crucial role in defining social interactions in correctional facilities and homeless shelters, which have overlapping  population demographics with residents of residential facilities for publicly-funded substance use disorder treatments, suggesting that racial dynamics may also affect clients’ experiences in this setting. This study seeks to investigate the racial dynamics among clients in residential substance use treatment facilities by interviewing clients in a facility in South Los Angeles about their interracial interactions, perceptions of clients of race and ethnicity different from their own and discussing how racial dynamics might affect their progression and outcome with treatment. 9 semi-structured interviews with clients in a female-only residential facility were conducted. Based on analyses of transcribed interviews, clients recounted that racial differences do not play a significant role in their experiences in treatment, especially compared to the street environment or correctional facilities, although racial identities are salient in social group formation. Motivation to recover from addiction and other shared lived experiences facilitate interracial solidarities within the treatment setting. This study suggests that treatment facilities could take advantage of clients’ similar experiences and interracial solidarity to create a sense of connectedness and inclusion in treatment.

The Barriers to Reentry of Formerly Incarcerated Elderly Individuals That Can Ultimately Lead to Homelessness: A Policy Document Analysis

Although homelessness, mass incarceration, and reentry to society are discussed in many different areas of research, there is little known when it comes to the effects that these issues have on elderly individuals. The barriers that elderly individuals face upon reentry to society are countless and the transition is far from smooth. This paper primarily focuses on housing, social security, and employment  policies. Public and private housing can be difficult to access due to required background checks and other factors such as loss of contact with family members due to long-term incarceration. Elderly individuals who spent most of their lives in prison may not be able to benefit from social security either. Additionally, employment could be difficult as well for those who cannot engage in physical activities and for those who do not have the technological skills necessary for non-physical jobs. Together, these findings suggest that the current policies make it incredibly difficult for elderly formerly incarcerated individuals to have any kind of financial cushion upon release, making them inevitably vulnerable to homelessness.

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