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Recipients of the 2018 Jefferson Public Citizens Awards

JPC Group: Nathan Abraham, Jack Wilkins, Cole Chisom
Faculty Advisor: Andrew Kahrl
Community Partner: Network2Work
Project Title: Network2Work Evaluation Study

Network2Work is a Charlottesville non-profit that aims to eradicate local poverty by connecting low-income individuals with jobs that pay a self-sustaining wage. Gathering quantitative data and qualitative feedback from past participants, our research will evaluate the program’s success in eliminating poverty among its participants. Our research will help Network2Work identify areas of potential improvement in supporting its participants and their escape from poverty.

JPC Group: Drew Boland, Jordan Richardson, Stephanie Yusif, Yuanpeng Cheng, James Mullin
Faculty Advisor: Garrick Louis
Community Partner: American Legion Post 74
Project Title: Charlottesville Village of Veterans (C-ViVe)

Formed in 2016, the Charlottesville Village of Veterans (C-ViVe) group is a multidisciplinary project team focused on designing a housing community for veterans and their families in the Charlottesville-Albemarle area. Our approach involves creating preliminary architectural drawings, gathering veteran input on the project through a comprehensive surveys and focus groups, and forming the foundation of the community to provide for a sustainable future for our nations' heroes.

JPC Group: Isabella Dillon, Anna Shaw, Yizong Hu
Faculty Advisor: David Edmunds
Community Partner: CEDAC
Project Title: Promoting Organic, Climate Smart Rice and Vegetable Production for Shared Farmer Income to Ensure Long term Food Security, Supply and Savings in Cambodia.

This project builds on existing University connections with CEDAC. Our team will work alongside CEDAC and local farmers to research innovative climate-smart agricultural experimentation and organic quality control structures. We will consolidate information from extensive interviews, field notes and experimental methods into three reports on best organic fertilizer practices, organic quality control and foreign imports impact on food security. This information allows for more targeted farmer experimentations that will improve their livelihoods.

JPC Group: Michael Marget, Madison Oxford, Daniel Kovach, Colton Sheehan , Rebecca Schelling
Faculty Advisor: John Steinke
Community Partner: Code Ana
Project Title: Optimizing the Code Ana Program to Efficiently Help Schools Tackle Food Allergy Emergencies

School-aged children with food allergies are in a vulnerable position as they start to make their own decisions about food and medical care. This project will evaluate schools’ preparedness for food allergy reactions and create a better-informed educational program for Charlottesville schools. We will accomplish this by improving the current risk assessment tool and designing educational modules that will allow Code Ana to expand its outreach and increase its effectiveness in schools.

JPC Group: Jessica Neupane, Kathy Nguyen, Julia Stanganelli, Emma Hendrix , Ian Wnorowski
Faculty Advisor: David Edmunds
Community Partner: Public Housing Association of Residents (PHAR)
Project Title: Growing for Change

Growing for Change is a CIO that works to develop stronger social ties between the University of Virginia and Westhaven, a Charlottesville public housing community, through collaborative efforts in creating individual gardens. We tackle issues of limited space and land ownership posed by housing developments and provide access to and awareness of nutritional foods. We collaborate with architecture and engineering students to help residents design the gardens, community oriented students to work with families, and gardening experts to provide support.

JPC Group: Reanna Panagides, Christine Guzman, Annika  Rhinehart, Abigail Maclin , Mira Sridharan
Faculty Advisor: Emma Mitchell
Community Partner: JENH-CEDEHCA
Project Title: Empowering Youth through a Sexual and Reproductive Health Escuela Móvil in Bluefields, Nicaragua

Our JPC team will partner with Bluefields, Nicaragua-based Human Rights NGO JENH-CEDEHCA to collaboratively develop an Escuela Móvil curriculum focused on sexual/reproductive health (SRH) using a “train the trainer” approach. We will assess risky behaviors in youth, and explore the feasibility and acceptability of this SRH intervention, combining education, engagement, and prevention through economic opportunity. Through workshops, developing murals, and sustained connection with social media, peer educators will distribute the prevention intervention to at-risk youth.

JPC Group: Fazlah Rahaman, Patrick Burke, Tehmeena Salahin, Ahmed Aly, Sudeepti Surapaneni
Faculty Advisor: David Edmunds
Community Partner: Tribal College
Project Title: SWO CS camp

This project aims to empower youths on the Lake Traverse Reservation of the Sisseston Wahpeton Oyate (SWO) in South Dakota through a four-week computer science summer camp. The project meets a growing interest among Native American Nations in expanding their own capacity for developing and maintaining technologies, including software programs, as expressed in the annual AISES conferences. The project aims to sustainably build on current SWO/UVa initiatives that are at the point of prototyping mobile applications to address social needs.

JPC Group: Rohit Rustagi, Monika Grabowska, Tessa Danehy, Robert Schwartz
Faculty Advisor: Dana Elzey
Community Partner: Bridges to Community
Project Title: Novel Water Filtration in Nicaragua

The NICA 2018 team will partner with Bridges to Community to study the feasibility and effectiveness of biosand and charcoal water filters in Tadazna, Nicaragua. Quantitative data will be generated from Water Quality Index testing that assesses physico-chemical characteristics of water samples. Qualitative data will be generated from Rapid Rural Appraisal methods used to interview community members and assess cultural acceptance of both filters. A comparative index of efficacy will be developed in relation to previously implemented ceramic filters.

JPC Group: Meredith Sutton, Thomas Beddow, Emma Taylor-Fishwick
Faculty Advisor: Jim Smith
Community Partner: PureMadi, University of Venda
Project Title: Field Evaluation of Ceramic Water Filters Manufactured with an Improved Silver Application Method

Building on prior laboratory and field research in Civil Engineering, we propose to field test a new method of silver application to ceramic water filters in a 20-30-household cohort in rural South Africa.  Filter performance for bacteria removal and silver concentrations will be monitored over time.  The new method promises to be less expensive, use local silver sources, and improve long-term filter performance.

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