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UNC-CH has an important role in improving health and prosperity for people and places

Our Vision

A healthy, thriving North Carolina for all through community-academic partnershipsCommunity park with sculpture of hand supporting an old leaning tree

Our Mission

Whole Community Connection (WCC) supports leaders to advance health equity in rural North Carolina by increasing local power to focus on priorities by and at the community level and co-creating a model of relationship centered engagement.

Building Relationships for Collective and Community-Led Actions

WCC’s leadership development programming focuses on:

  • Understanding one’s self and others
  • Expand collaborations that improve community health
  • Develop collective action for systems change for equity

Program Components

WCC teams receive $45,000 for one year to implement their projects while participating in leadership development.

  1. Project work = The hours spent implementing a project with additional support from UNC-CH interprofessional students available if needed. 
  2. In-person convenings = Approximately 32 hours total (8 days) spent together in Edgecombe and Robeson County learning and networking.
  3. Additional learning = Approximately 5 hours per month (60 hours total) spent in monthly webinars, individual and team coaching, mentoring, and independent learning.

Our History

In 2019, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill launched a new strategic plan with eight initiatives centered around the University’s mission. One of these initiatives is “Serve to Benefit Society” which emphasizes how UNC-CH has a vital role in improving health and prosperity for people and places. With support from UNC-CH and a gift from the Kenan Charitable Trust, Whole Community Connection (WCC) was born to develop community-centered solutions to address health disparities in North Carolina. WCC is a partnership bringing together UNC Rural led by Dr. Giselle Corbie and the Office of Interprofessional Education and Practice (IPEP) led by Dr. Meg Zomorodi.



WCC is supported by UNC-Chapel Hill and a gift from the Kenan Charitable Trust. In addition, Claudia Fernandez, a co-investigator on this study, and a family member have an authorship interest in materials/ products commercialized by the FastTrack Leadership Program, which may be used during the course of this study. If this product or approach is successful at some point in the future, Claudia Fernandez and her spouse may receive financial benefits.