Valenzuela as Panelist at Global Conference on Primary Health Care

CAC Student Presents at Global Conference on Primary Health Care

By Angela Askey, Executive Director Public Relations and Marketing

Maria Alicia Valenzuela, a Central Arizona College student enrolled in the Community Health Worker Certificate Program recently returned from the Global Conference on Primary Health Care held in Astana, Kazakhstan. The Government of Kazakhstan, World Health Organization (WHO), and UNICEF were cohosts of the conference.

The Conference drew medical professionals who represented mostly at risk populations from across the world including World Health Ministers, as well as public and primary health care representatives.

The invite to attend and present at this conference happened after Valenzuela did a presentation during a 2017 congressional hearing in Washington D.C.

“It was an honor to attend this conference,” stated Valenzuela. “It was rewarding to see how vital the work of Community Health Workers is around the world. There has been so much growth in the nation. It was beneficial to see how CHW program models work outside the United States, how the world views CHWs and how we are utilizing the CHW for the betterment of communities suffering various disparities, such as access to basic health care, proper sanitation, and access to healthy foods.”

For 18 years, Valenzuela has worked for the nonprofit Esperança. She currently serves as the Director of Domestic Programs and previously held the position of Community Health Coordinator.

It is Valenzuela’s goal to complete her Community Health Worker Certificate in August of 2019 and continue with her current employer, expanding programming to support families in her community.