Thursday, 22 September 2011

Hertfordshire researchers to push forward an asset-based approach to health and wellbeing

University of Hertfordshire researchers are to host an international conference at the British Library next week (26-27 September), which will explore how asset based approaches can enhance health among communities.

A health asset is any factor or resource which enhances the ability of individuals, communities and populations to maintain and sustain health and wellbeing. The conference, Assets for Health and Wellbeing across the life course, will focus on methods identifying, measuring and evaluating assets for health and wellbeing.

“What we aim to do is push forward the argument for using asset-based approaches to health and wellbeing,” said Dr Wendy Wills, one of the organizers at the University of Hertfordshire’s Centre for Research into Primary and Community Care. “Asset-based approaches are important because they focus on the positive things that people are already doing to protect and promote their own health instead of continually looking at the negatives. We have around sixty speakers from around the world presenting at the conference so this gives us an ideal opportunity to share our research evidence and discuss best practice."

Researchers from the University of Hertfordshire will be among those presenting their findings at the conference. Key contributions include The contribution of a community food group to older people’s  nutritional and social well-being in which Dr Angela Dickinson will examine the role community food groups play in terms of nutritional and social support to older people; other Hertfordshire papers will explore the range of social determinants on adolescent health, propose an asset mapping process to facilitate the capturing of children’s wellbeing, and assess the benefit of using Appreciative Enquiry to improve end of life care.

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