Sentinel City grapples with many social problems, including congestion, poor quality of life, environmental degradation, and various health concerns. The youth in this neighborhood suffers from a myriad of problems, including drug abuse, teenage pregnancy, and crime and violence. The neighborhood is also not friendly to homosexuals, forcing members of the LGBTQ to live in fear and hiding. Instances of bullying, prejudicing, and teasing gay teens and young girls who fall victim to early and unplanned pregnancies are rampant in the district, especially within learning institutions. In addition, law enforcement officers are always hunting down, apprehending, and incarcerating youths suspected of possessing, selling, or using illegal drugs. A community health assessment will help identify the most pressing health concerns facing this population.
The misfortunes that adolescents in Industrial Heights are forced to go through are further catalyzed by the living conditions within their community. These can well be understood by exploring the social determinants of health (subsystems) in Industrial Heights. These include income and social status, social support networks, education and literacy, employment and working conditions, social environments, physical environments, healthy child development, and health services. Walking along the streets of Industrial Heights will expose one to heaps of uncollected garbage and some dilapidated buildings with graffiti. These poor physical environments threaten the community’s health standards as they enhance the spread of diseases and act as health hazards. The sight of burst sewer lines, with dogs, mice, and cats roaming free, is common.
When it comes to the social environment, the residents of Industrial Heights are generally friendly people who have the habit of ‘hanging out in entertainment joints, barbershops, and along the streets. The presence of many churches within the community points to a fairly religious society. However, there are also visible signs of gang membership, especially if one goes deeper beyond the Better Health Clinic. Gang-related graffiti and murals populate most buildings. The deeper areas of the district are territorial and closed up, pointing to a community that does not seem quite welcoming. These areas do not seem safe but rather havens of criminal gangs. The social support networks are mainly offered by faith-based institutions that populate the district. For instance, the Interfaith Church provides a nutritional program to low-income families and the homeless.
Most houses in the city have almost similar structures and shapes. Grocery outlets occupy a single stretch and populate a single area. There are no sufficient spaces that separate shops from residential buildings. The scarcity of spacing in Industrial Heights makes it a challenge for growth and expansion prospects. Meanwhile, the primary means of transport used by Industrial Heights residents is the road. There are city bus services that ferry people from one corner of the town to the other. There is a significant population who own personal cars, which they mainly use during weekends.
The health concerns of Sentinel City in general and Industrial Heights, in particular, arise from the social health determinants discussed above. The dirty physical environment, burst sewer pipes, and the presence of stray dogs and rats in the streets expose residents to various health problems. When it rains, stormwater carries pilferages from the garbage heaps back into the district’s water supply system exposing residents to the risks of contracting waterborne diseases. Moreover, these garbage heaps are frequented by flies and insects, which then fly to food-selling joints such as butcheries, transmitting pathogens to human foods (Artiga & Hinton, 2018). The stray dog roaming the streets are not vaccinated and, thus, carry the danger of infecting people with rabies diseases.
The endless graffiti present in most buildings and walls are not only an eyesore but also sends a chilling message to residents of the presence of criminal groups that continue to threaten the peace of the area. The existence of social support networks, albeit in small numbers, helps in averting serious health-related issues that might arise as a result of malnutrition and adverse effects of weather. Notably, the identified social support providers mostly target the homeless and low-income families with nutritional food supplements.
Other social support networks also provide shelter and clothing to the homeless. Although Sentinel city has a few open spaces and parks, the same cannot be said of Industrial Heights (Determinants Of Health, n.d). Almost all the spaces are occupied by residential buildings, shops, churches, schools, and factories. This means that the district misses out on the benefits that open spaces play, like air circulation. The congestion of buildings and shops does not auger well with the health standards required for such an area.
Notably, the residential houses are mainly one- or two-bedroom units, each occupied by a household of six or more. This provides a perfect environment for the spread of diseases in case of an outbreak. Moreover, the presence of factories within the estate significantly contributes to serious air pollution, which exposes residents to airborne diseases like bronchitis, tuberculosis, and asthma. Since bus transit is the main mode of transport used in Industrial Heights, there is no significant emission of exhaust fumes into the environment. Additionally, there are no serious traffic jam issues in the district (Development of the National Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Objectives for 2030, n.d). This implies that town residents do not spend hours on the road breathing dangerous fumes. This is one of the few areas where Industrial Heights is strong.
The highlighted health concerns bedeviling Sentinel city, as discussed above, threaten the achievement of the Healthy People 2030 goals. One of the outstanding goals is to ‘create social, physical, and economic environments that promote the attainment of full potential for health and well-being for all.’ However, from the deplorable physical and social health concerns that characterize the city, the chances of attaining this goal remain remote at the moment.
Nursing diagnostics will primarily entail identifying the problem that afflicts the community in terms of the most severe to the mild ones. The leading challenge identified from the analysis above is the lack of recreation centers for adolescence age students. The congested housing systems and street corridors make it hard for members of the gay community to interact socially with each other (Maurer & Smith, n.d). This is attributed to the fact that the community is yet to embrace homosexuality as a sexual orientation. The intervention here will be to develop various recreational centers spread across the city. It is expected that these centers will provide havens for these youths to freely express themselves and engage in productive work.
The plan will be centered on the SMART goals of the project. Specifically, it will involve the creation of recreation centers for adolescence age students. A total of ten such centers will be built in each neighborhood and equipped with relevant equipment that will engage youths with different talents. The city has the capacity in terms of manpower and financial resources to deliver ten recreational centers in two years. The Mayor of Sentinel City, in conjunction with regional city authorities, will involve community members in identifying reactional themes that are most preferred by different youth groups. The city government will then allocate $20,000 for each center, which will be expected to be completed in two years’ time after commencement.
The success of the project will be evaluated by checking its outcome. The most immediate outcome will be to provide havens to youths rebuked by the community for their sexual orientation, teen pregnancy, and involvement in drugs. Therefore, if the project succeeds in accommodating these youths, it will be considered an accomplishment. The percentage of success will be determined by the number of attendees against the target number. The interventions will be expected to correct the issue of youth neglect in the community. This will be known by conducting a survey to determine the number of teenage pregnancies and drug abusers in the streets to establish if the numbers have reduced. By reducing the number of drug abusers, the Sentinel City community streets will be safe, and residents will not feel threatened by the presence of gangs in their midst.
After assessing the health situation of the Sentinel City community, it has emerged that there are serious health-related issues that require urgent attention. However, the most biting problem is the welfare of the youth. Some are involved in crime and engaged in drug abuse. Cases of teen pregnancy are rampant within the community, which also seems to be harsh towards homosexuals. It is against these conditions that recreational centers for these neglected youths would be an urgent need. The Industrial Heights community is the epitome of poor health, and insecurity paused by idle youth. With the development of recreation centers, the community will be safe and secure.
Artiga, S., & Hinton, E. (2018). Beyond health care: The role of social determinants in promoting health and health equity. KFF. Web.
Determinants of health. (n.d). Health Stats. Web.
Development of the national health promotion and disease prevention objectives for 2030. (n.d). Healthy People: Web.
Maurer, F. A., & Smith, C. M. (n.d). Community diagnosis, planning, and intervention. Nurse Key. Web.