Within public health, it’s important to have strong leaders that strengthen communities
and build upon resources. Living within a rural community allows for leaders to interact
with those they know as neighbors and friends. It’s an opportunity to be a part of what
makes a community flourish. As a leader, it’s essential to work with others, motivate them,
follow through on initiatives, and be a systems thinker (Rowitz, 2014). Within my rural
community, there are many opportunities to serve. A current leadership opportunity is
working with local food banks and churches in responding to COVID-19 needs. There are
many who are suffering because of the pandemic and local leadership has never been more
important. Cultural differences may traditionally play a role in providing resources, but in
a situation of a pandemic, we are all equal and as one. Having said that, cultural
differences may influence the way some choose to seek help. In those instances, it may be
necessary to have a proactive approach and seek those who are struggling but may not
have the power to say so. This is where strong community leadership can have a significant
difference on the wellbeing of a community. Strong leadership leads to strong resources
and support for community members.
Rowitz, L. (2014). Public Health Leadership: Putting Principles into Practice (Third ed.).
Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.
My peer has failed to capture how he will address and assess cultural differences when
dealing with rural community members. I also do not think cultural differences have any
correlation with the provision of resources, as mentioned by my peer. However, I believe that he
should have addressed how he plans to approach the stigma associated with the disease. He has
also failed to highlight how he intends to enlighten families and communities of the need to
understand that they can all be affected and hence no need to stigmatize anyone. There is also a
failure to include discussions of cultural differences as well as specific examples. My peer also
failed to give us strategies that they would use within the role highlighted and how they would
do it to benefit the cultural aspect of the situation. Instead, he has proceeded to repeat himself on
how strong leadership leads to reliable resources and support on the community without letting
us know what he is implying in particular (Rowitz, 2014) .
I do agree that it is critical to have strong leaders within a community who can empower
locals and help them build upon resources. I do believe that COVID-19 pandemic is an issue of
great concern. This is particularly so because the virus is new and has no cure. Indeed my peer’s
cause is a worthy one since it gives food to the less fortunate and addresses their cultural needs.
Unfortunately, he does not address how this can be done in a much better and safer way that will
still ensure service, considering this is a highly contagious disease with no cure. I commend my
peers for their leadership skills through which they exhibit and acknowledge cultural differences
within the rural community. The proactive approach that he anticipates to take during the period
is necessary and needed for this pandemic period. It may be crucial also that as a leader, he
considers ways of not putting himself and those in need of assistance at risk.
Rowitz, L. (2014). Public Health Leadership: Putting Principles into Practice . (Third, Ed.)
Burlington: Jones & Bartlett Learning.