Center for Community and
Health Equity

Youth Programs

The Center for Community Health and Health Equity (CCHHE) is dedicated to helping those who need us most by not only directly addressing health issues, but also the social factors that influence health. We recognize that one of the most effective ways to have a positive impact on the overall health and wellbeing of local communities is to give young people the opportunities they need to succeed.

CCHHE provides a wide range of development opportunities for young people – from pre-kindergarten to college – to advance their education and prepare for careers in health. Our programs bring together hundreds of Brigham and Women’s Hospital employees who serve as volunteers working in partnership with local schools and community organizations to create educational and employment opportunities for young people and help build a diverse workforce in the health care field. From developing basic literacy skills to enhancing science and health care skills, we offer support, guidance, and mentoring for our young people.

Building Science and Health Care Skills

Our nationally award-winning Student Success Jobs Program (SSJP) is a year-round paid internship program designed to introduce students from eight Boston public high schools to medical, health, and science professions. The program matches students with a mentor in the medical field, provides hands-on work experience in the hospital, and enhances students’ interest in health care and higher education. Learn more about SSJP.

The Project TEACH Program offered to rising sophomores provides the opportunity to learn about careers in health, science, and medicine through paid summer internships in various BWH departments, academic research projects, and weekly life skills seminars.

The Summer Science Academy program for middle school students provides valuable exposure to careers in health and science education through field trips, intensive science instruction, and opportunities to explore careers in health care. Students spend the summer at BWH as paid scholars working on research and linking scientific concepts to real-life applications within the hospital.

Our Health and Science Club program helps fourth and fifth graders learn and develop scientific inquiry skills through interactive and engaging health and science projects. Projects are led by BWH employee volunteers, so in addition to learning science, students are learning about health and science careers. Evaluation has shown that the program increases scientific knowledge retention and improves test scores.

Growing Literacy Skills

The successful Pen Pal Program is a literacy-based, traditional letter writing program linking elementary school students with BWH employees. Literacy and communication skills are supported while providing a fun and exciting experience for the children.

Our Book Buddy Program brings hospital volunteers to pre-kindergarten through second grade classrooms to read aloud to students. Reading aloud with children is an important activity for children to become successful readers. Brigham Book Buddies helps build the skills of reading and develops greater interest in books and reading.

Get Involved

To learn more about our programs, how your school or organization can get involved, how to become a volunteer or mentor, or other ways to support our efforts, please contact Pamela Audeh, Youth Development Manager at paudeh@bwh.harvard.edu, or for more information about our high school and college programs email us at SSJP@partners.org