Lauren BostickThe day in the life of a community health worker starts out a lot like any other working person’s day. There’s paperwork, answering emails, drinking coffee (or in my case, green tea) and office small talk.  It can be easy for someone to get caught up in the 9-5 routine, but it’s always during our case conferencing time (when all the staff gather and discuss our current cases) when I realize how atypical my workday is.

While sharing cases with my supervisor, I recall how I received a referral from the hospital for a 12-year-old girl. She was pregnant and had missed numerous prenatal visits to her obstetrician. Since she was 38 weeks along, I was tasked with taking her on as a client. Braving subzero temperatures, I found myself at her front door being greeted by her mother. After establishing a relationship and trust, I was able to convince her mother of the importance of necessary care. From then on I was able to provide education, transportation, food, and referrals for additional services that were needed in the home, and ultimately, for the delivery of a healthy baby girl.

When I think of my day I realize it’s far from normal. I wear many hats: educator, supporter, advocate, and even spokesperson. I find that every day brings something new – challenges, frustrations, and most importantly, rewards. That’s what makes my day far different from your average 9-5 job.

Lauren Bostick is a native of Cincinnati; she has been a Certified Community Health Worker for the State of Ohio for 10 years and has been employed by the City of Cincinnati Health Department since 2011. She has four children and three grandchildren.