Urban Community Health Lab

Faculty Advisor: Dr. Sally Schwer Canning

Our aim is to foster the health and flourishing of children, adults, and families living in poor, urban communities as well as the professionals and volunteers who serve there. Our values in this process are: collaboration, continuity, competence, humility, and hospitality.

Motivation For Our Work

  • To respond to the heart of God for those who are poor;
  • To respond to our own poverty and need to be in just community across difference;
  • To witness to truth & beauty, make culture (A. Crouch) and join in God’s renewal of His beloved creation.


Currently, there are two active streams of research, affectionately known as:  Sisters’ Keepers and Going the Distance. The first seeks to understand and support the health of patients at the Lawndale Christian Health Center in Chicago. Current projects target depression and domestic violence in women and low birth-weight in their babies. Another examines language and perceptions of Spanish-speaking on-line discussion group participants describing pregnancy and postpartum and mood experiences. Future projects could involve other patient groups and concerns within behavioral health.

The second line of research is aimed at understanding and encouraging healthy practices, well-being and faithfulness in individuals and faith-based community organizations serving in high-stress, poor contexts.

Anticipated Activities of a Prospective Researcher

  • CAPS Conference presentations
  • CFHA Conference poster
  • LCHC Data collection and analysis
  • CCDA Data collection and analysis
  • Collaborative dissertation research from project planning to completion
  • Laughter. Celebration. Some groaning and a few tears

Recent scholarly contributions (PDF) of urban community health research lab.

Go Back To Our Research Listings