Featured Member - Community Development and Health Network (CDHN)

20 Jan 2015 Shauna O'Neill    Last updated: 4 Jul 2019

Community Development and Health Network logo

CDHN is a regional network of individuals and organisations which works to promote understanding of community development as an effective way to end health inequalities. They do this by building capacity and influencing policy.

CDHN key messages…

Health is:
‘Health is a state of complete physical, social and mental wellbeing and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. The enjoyment of the highest attainment of health is one of the fundamental rights of every human being…’ (WHO 1948)

Health inequalities are:
Health inequalities are the unfair and avoidable differences in the health status of people in our society. They are caused by the conditions in which people are born, grow, live, work and age.

Community Development is:
Community development is about enabling people and communities to organise and work together to identify their own needs and aspirations, and to take action to address needs and influence the decisions which affect their lives.

CDHN supports:
CDHN support their network to make critical connections across all sectors to take collective action on the causes of health inequalities.


Training and Facilitation…

CDHN deliver a range of accredited and non-accredited training programmes to community, voluntary and statutory sector workers and volunteers across NI. 
This year, as our Big Lottery Funding ends, the popular Pathways to Health Training will be replaced with a portfolio of new training programmes. All our training is underpinned by community development values with a focus on improving community health and well-being.

  • Community Health Champions is a new 2 day programme designed to equip community workers and volunteers with the knowledge, skills and support to increase their confidence and help them engage proactively with communities. It is based on an assets approach which builds on the skills, knowledge, experience, networks and resources that individuals and communities have access to.
  • Group Work Skills is an interactive, practical one day programme designed to enable participants to plan and deliver effective group sessions in their communities or organisations.
  • Co-Production Training. CDHN is currently developing a training programme around Co-Production which will be available in the coming months. This programme will be of particular interest to those involved in partnership working on the commissioning, design or delivery of public services.
  • Facilitation. CDHN’s trainers have a wealth of experience facilitating sessions for voluntary, community and statutory groups. They use a range of methods and tailor each session to the needs and experience of the participants. They have experience of working across Ireland and internationally. 

For more information on our training email: [email protected]


The Building the Community-Pharmacy Partnership (BCPP) Programme supports community pharmacists and communities to work in partnership.  BCPP projects have addressed many issues by linking pharmacists with women’s groups, early year’s programmes, people with addictions and older people’s groups among many others.  CDHN have been effective in targeting areas of disadvantage and in working with vulnerable groups.

  • Level 1 funding (£2000) is for those interested in developing a community pharmacy partnership that will explore local issues. The closing dates for Level 1 funding this year are Thursday, 19 February and Thursday, 17 September 2015 at 4.00pm.
  • Level 2 funding (£10,000) is for those who have planned to work in partnership and are clear about what their project wants to achieve.  The closing dates for Level 2 funding this year are Thursday, 16 April and Thursday, 19 November 2015 at 4.00pm.

If you would like to apply for funding, application forms and guidance notes can be downloaded from www.cdhn.org/bcpp. For further information call cdhn on 028 3026 4606 or email: [email protected]

Influencing policy and campaigning…

CDHN work to support our members to understand and influence policy through notification of consultations and directing members to relevant reading.  We seek to influence policy directly through responding to consultations, engaging with decision makers and sitting on steering committees.  

Alongside their ongoing work CDHN provides project support, policy and context analysis, and engagement and consultation support to a range of organisations on project by project basis.  

CDHN are currently involved in Inspiring Impact and are working with nine member organisations to develop and enhance their impact practice.

Become a CDHN Member…

CDHN membership is free and open to anyone with an interest in community development and health work. To join log on to www.cdhn.org and follow the links or email: [email protected]. Members will receive CDHN's online newsletter Health Bytes E-zine, invites to training events, conferences, funding opportunities, access to fact sheets and information.

shauna.oneill@nicva.org's picture
by Shauna O'Neill

Information Officer

[email protected]

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