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Who are Community Health Workers and How Can Social Workers Work Most Effectively with Them?

Total Credits: 3 including 3 Category I CE

800 Online |  Special Offers
Julie Smithwick, LMSW, CHW
Course Levels:
3 Hours 15 Minutes
Target Audience:
Social Workers, LCPCs, Psychologists



Community Health Workers (CHWs) are trusted individuals from communities that oftentimes face high health and social inequities. CHWs help individuals navigate resources, connect to needed services, understand and improve their health conditions, advocate for their needs, and address community challenges by building on strengths. Over the last few years, CHWs have started to become integrated into care teams at clinics, assigned as liaisons with schools, and hired at community organizations to provide outreach and advocacy. Social workers and CHWs can work together to best support individuals and communities, but a more thorough understanding of the similarities, differences, strengths and potential challenges of these relationships is needed in order to work effectively together. This workshop instructor is both an MSW and a CHW and will give insight into who CHWs are, what they do, and how to facilitate a positive working relationship.



Julie Smithwick, LMSW, CHW Related seminars and products:

Julie Smithwick, LMSW, CHW, has over twenty-five years of experience working alongside communities and families to find solutions to address health and social inequities. Trained as a Community Health Worker in Ecuador, she is the founder and director of the Arnold School of Public Health Center for Community Health Alignment. Prior to developing the Center, Smithwick founded and led PASOs, a community-based organization that engages with Latino communities throughout South Carolina utilizing the CHW model. She also helped found the South Carolina CHW Association and is on the Boards of Directors of various organizations including the National Association of Community Health Workers.

Agenda & Learning Objectives


12:45 Log on
1:15 p.m. 


2:45 p.m.     Break
3:00 p.m.

Lecture (Continued)

4:30 p.m. Questions & Adjournment



Upon the completion of this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • State the roles, scope, qualities and experiences of a community health worker to better understand this profession
  • To compare  how the roles of CHWs and MSW's are similar and different, and how they can complement one another to serve individuals and communities
  • Model how to best support CHWs and how to respond to certain situations and facilitate positive working environments and teams

Bibliography & References


  1. Ingram M., Schachter KA., Sabo SJ., et al. A community Health Workers Intervention to Address the Social Determinants of Health Through Policy Change. J Primary Prevent. 2014;35:119-123.
  2. Felix, H. C., Mays, G. P., Stewart, M. K., Cottoms, N., & Olson, M. Medicaid Savings Resulted When Community Health Workers Matched Those With Needs To Home And Community Care. Health Affairs. 2011;30(7):366–1374. doi: 10.1377/hlthaff.2011.0150.
  3. The Community Health Worker Core Consensus (C3) Project: 2016 Recommendations on CHW Roles, Skills, and Qualities. Accessed on February 20, 2020.
  4. Community Health Workers Evidence Based Models Toolbox- HRSA Office of Rural Health Policy. Accessed on February 20, 2020.
  5. American Public Health Association. Community Health Workers. Accessed on February 20, 2020.
  6. Matthew, R., Willms, L., Voravudhi, A., Smithwick J., Jennings, P. & Machado-Escudero , Y. (2017) Advocates for Community Health and Social Justice: A Case Example of a Multisystemic Promotores Organization in South Carolina, Journal of Community Practice, 25:3-4, 344-364, DOI: 10.1080/10705422.2017.1359720
  7. Norris SL, Chowdhury FM, Van Le K, et al. Effectiveness of community health workers in the care of persons with diabetes. Diabet Med. 2006;23(5):544–556.
  8. Gary TL, Bone LR, Hill MN, et al. Randomized controlled trial of the effects of nurse case manager and community health worker interventions on risk factors for diabetes-related complications in urban African Americans. Prev Med. 2003;37(1):23–32.
  9. Brownstein J, Bone L, Dennison C, Hill M, Kim M, Levine D. Community health workers as interventionists in the prevention and control of heart disease and stroke. Am J Prev Med. 2005;29(5):128–133.
  10. Brownstein J, Chowdhury F, Norris S, et al. Effectiveness of community health workers in the care of people with hypertension. Am J Prev Med. 2007;32(5):435–447.

Live Interactive Webinar Platforms




The Office of Continuing Professional Education hosts Live Interactive Webinars through two platforms: Zoom and WebEx.

Both platforms offer high quality and user-friendly webinar platforms for our registrants.


System Requirements:

  • Operating Systems: Windows XP or higher; MacOS 9 or higher; Android 4.0 or higher.
  • Internet Browser: Google Chrome; Firefox 10.0 or higher.

Our system is not compatible with the Safari web browser.

  • Broadband Internet Connection: Cable, High-speed DSL and any other medium that is internet accessible.

**Please have your device charging at all times to ensure that your device does not lose power during the webinar.


Course Interaction Requirements:

To participate in Live Interactive Webinars, you MUST have a device that allows you to view the presentation on screen and hear the instructor at all times. We do not allow participants to call-in from their phones or mobile devices and solely listen to the presentation. Participation in Live Interactive Webinars is mandatory.

Late Fees and Refunds

Fee & Registration:

Cost is $65 and includes CE credit. Registering after  Friday, March 26, 2021 will incur an additional $20 late fee. *Cancellations must be received 24 hours in advance prior to the live interactive webinar to receive a refund or a credit letter.


*All cancellations will be subjected to a $35.00 administration fee

Course Completion & CE Information


Category I Maryland BSWE Requirement

The Office of Continuing Professional Education at the University Of Maryland School Of Social Work is authorized by the Board of Social Work Examiners in Maryland to sponsor social work continuing education programs. This workshop qualifies for 3 Category I Continuing Education Units. The Office of Continuing Professional Education is also authorized by the Maryland Board of Psychologists and the Maryland Board of Professional Counselors to sponsor Category A continuing professional education.

Please refer to the tab "Live Interactive Webinar Policies & FAQs" for UMSSW Office of CPE policies regarding all live interactive webinar related matters.

Target Audience

Social Workers, LCPCs, and Psychologists

Webinar Policies & FAQs

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