It’s the action, not the fruit of the action, that’s important.
You have to do the right thing.
It may not be in your power,
may not be in your time,
that there will be any fruit.
But that doesn’t mean you stop doing the right thing.
You may never know what results
come from your action.
But if you do nothing, there will be no result.
It is not given to us to know which acts
or by whom will cause the critical mass
to tip toward an enduring good.
What is needed for dramatic change
is an accumulation of acts:
adding, adding to, adding more, continuing.
We know that it does not take “everyone on Earth”
to bring justice and peace,
but only a small, determined group
who will not give up during the first,
second or hundredth gale.
-Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes
Our Action Communities are self-organized by our fellows according to the focal areas of practice that engage their passion to make a difference. The Action Communities that the Alliance is currently organizing are listed below along with contact information about how to get involved and activities underway.
ALF’s action communities are interdisciplinary teams composed of experienced leaders passionate about making a difference within their shared thematic focus. ALF’s National Action Community for Health Equity is composed of diverse researchers, scholars, practitioners, community-based advocates and service providers dedicated to achieving the vision of health equity in the United States of America. The National Action Community for Health Equity adopts ALF’s working definition of the terms “equity” and “equitable”:
“Equity and Equitable” refers to a specific commitment to racial equity and also broadly in pursuit of fairness, with compassion and empathy for others, taking into account their welfare from their perspective within the context of building a society that promotes liberty and justice for all. The commitment to equity includes:
- Rejection of the idea that there is, or should be, a hierarchy of human value, or a justified difference in the opportunity to flourish, premised on perceived differences in skin, hair or eye color or any other perceived differences in origin, identity or physical appearance among human beings.
- Consciousness of, and willingness now to account for, past and present disadvantage in flourishing suffered because of perceived differences in skin, hair or eye color or any other perceived difference in origin, identity or physical appearance that has caused such disadvantage.
- Commitment to work toward universal, sustainable human flourishing in which people of all faiths, ethnicities, cultures, income groups, gender identities and sexual orientations, and national and geographic origins have equal opportunities to flourish irrespective of perceived differences in skin, hair or eye color or any other perceived differences in origin, identity or physical appearance.
This National Action Community adopts the definition of Health Equity advanced by the American Public Health Association. Health Equity means that everyone has the opportunity to attain their highest level of health. Inequities arise as a result of barriers that prevent individuals and communities from reaching their full health potential. Inequities are not the same as health disparities, which are differences in health status between people related to social or demographic factors such as race, gender, income or geographic region. The reduction of health disparities is one way we can measure our progress toward achieving health equity. This Action Community recognizes that structural racism is a force deeply influencing social determinants of health such as employment, housing, education, health care access, public safety and food access. These social determinants can cause health disparities and prevent health equity.
The mission of the ALF’s National Health Equity Action Community includes the following:
- Strengthening relationships and teamwork among Health Equity leaders committed to progress.
- Surfacing and disseminating current knowledge and best practices for progress in Health Equity initiatives.
- Endorsing and credentialing Health Equity curricula and programs developed in partnership with communities of color consistent with the principles of participatory action research.
- Identifying and launching system change initiatives where there is consensus about promising approaches to achieving progress toward Health Equity, including actions on public policy.
- Forging collaborations for research and development on new technologies, approaches and strategies to achieve breakthrough results that create rapid gains in Health Equity in the United States.