Author: Casey Ryan, C’95
Penn Nursing is in the middle of executing their biggest symposium tour, around a topic that Dean Afaf I Meleis, PhD, DrPS(hon), is extremely passionate – urban women’s health. Urban women’s health is the intersection of women’s health, the practice of public health and the related effects of living in an urban environment. While much is known about these topics individually, the junction of these topics needs more inspection. The Healthy Cities: Healthy Women conference series aims to promote discussions about re-envisioning our communities to make them universally safer, healthier and more livable.
Since its launch in 2009, Penn Nursing has taken their symposia to Miami (November 20, 2009), New York City, (May 5, 2011) and Los Angeles (November 18, 2012). Starting with a city-centric focus, the events featured local experts like Dr. Divina Grossman, Dean, Florida International University College of Nursing & Health Sciences, in Miami, Nicholas D. Kristof, a two-time Pulitzer Prize columnist for The New York Times in New York and Paula Daniels, Senior Policy Advisor, Office of Mayor Villaraigosa in Los Angeles. Yet their messages were global: discussing what the future of Health Care Reform holds for women, combating a “pervasive human rights violation, the oppression of women and girls in the developing world,” and the shedding light on the world-wide issues of domestic violence, poverty and human trafficking. For a taste of the discussion so far, Penn Nursing has created a Healthy Cities, Healthy Women youtube page.
The next stop for Healthy Cities, Healthy Women is London on September 17. Penn Nursing has partnered with The Lancet and King’s College London to bring this discussion to Europe. Endorsed by the Mayor of London, Healthy Cities, Healthy Women will spotlight the issues of preventing violence against women, providing increased access to services, improving health through improving the built environment and identifying ways to build and sustain a healthy life cycle within a healthier urban community. The message that “women are the pillars of society, playing important and multiple roles as mothers, leaders, students, decision-makers, scholars, lawmakers, business executives, voters, and workers” will be a critical theme to the day’s discussion, as mentioned in Dean Meleis’ recent blog entry for The Lancet. Registration is open for this incredible event.
On the heels of London, the tour returns to the States in Washington, DC – the center of health policy. Focused on the unique challenges and key roles that women play in maintaining good health practices in an increasingly urban world, Healthy Cities, Healthy Women Washington will provide an opportunity to discuss the need to improve the urban environment to strength the health of women, their families and the communities in which they contribute as well as creating practical solutions to improve health through improving the built environment. The conference aims to address the impact of cities on the health of women and their families. Registration is open for this event as well.
The last stop of the symposia tour will be in Philadelphia on May 15, 2014 with Health Cities, Health Women: The Global Future. The details will be forthcoming; please bookmark and return to Penn Nursing’s Healthy Cities, Healthy Women site for information in the near future.
Please note, all of the photos in this entry are available on Penn Urban Women’s Health Facebook page.