Charlotte REACH 2010

An Evidence-Based Practice


Charlotte REACH 2010 addressed three health behaviors that are risk factors for diabetes and heart disease: fruit & vegetable consumption, physical activity, and cigarette smoking. The project was implemented in a predominantly African American, economically disadvantaged community in Charlotte, North Carolina. Through community involvement with a new community health center in the area, diabetes and heart disease were identified as priorities. A coalition was created that included the community health center, the county health department and other service providers. Lay health advisors were a key component of the project. These were well-trusted individuals in the community who acted as health advocates for the community. They were trained and advised by a team of health education specialists to develop programs such as walking groups, smoking cessation classes, and religion-based nutrition programs.

Several projects were aimed at creating changes in the community environment and public policy, including a farmers' market, a diabetes registry, a culturally specific mass media campaign, and communicating with political leaders on smoking cessation legislation. Randomized telephone surveys of health behaviors were conducted to assess health behaviors. An evaluation compared residents in this geographic region at baseline and five years later and also compared them with African Americans across the state.

Goal / Mission

To improve three health behaviors that are risk factors for diabetes and heart disease (fruit & vegetable consumption, physical activity, and cigarette smoking) in an African American community.

Results / Accomplishments

At baseline (in 2000), fruit and vegetable consumption among the local and statewide groups was similar, but by 2005 program participants were more likely than statewide African American respondents to eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables each day (p < 0.001). Between 2000 and 2005, program participants classified as physically inactive decreased, while the statewide rate increased. There were significant decreases in physical inactivity between 2000 and 2005 among women (p = 0.02), college graduates (p = 0.01), and respondents aged 35 to 54 years (p = 0.01). In comparison, there was an increase in physical inactivity in statewide survey respondents age 35 to 54 years during the same time period (p = 0.02). Smoking rates decreased across both sample populations, but only the decline among female program participants reached statistical significance (p = 0.03).

About this Promising Practice

Primary Contact
LaTonya Chavis, MS
Charlotte REACH 2010 Coalition
1350 South Kings Drive
Charlotte, NC 28207
Health / Diabetes
Health / Heart Disease & Stroke
Health / Exercise, Nutrition, & Weight
Charlotte REACH 2010 Coalition, Chronic Disease and Injury Section, NC Division of Public Health
American Journal of Public Health
Date of publication
Sep 2008
Date of implementation
Geographic Type
Charlotte, North Carolina
For more details
Target Audience
Racial/Ethnic Minorities