2012TarCreek landscape

Community Engagement

Community Engagement:

The Grand Lake Watershed Mercury Study is an example of a community based participatory research project. We involved community members in every aspect of the study design and implementation. Here are some examples.

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Our research question. This research project grew out of concerns from our study team members at the L.E.A.D. Agency and other community members about mercury exposure among people who rely on Grand Lake as a source of fish.

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Participants. Over 150 residents of the Grand Lake area took part in our study. These participants completed questionnaires about their fish consumption, provided hair samples for mercury testing, and kept track of their fish consumption over the course of a year.

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Fish collection. Some of the fish we tested were donated by study participants and by other residents who actively fish from the Grand Lake watershed. Many fish were donated by the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation as part of ongoing fish population surveys.

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Community advisors. Our community advisory board and fishing advisory council have convened throughout the duration of the project. They have provided valuable suggestions for developing our research project, key study documents, such as questionnaires and brochures, and plans for disseminating study findings to the community.

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Ongoing community research updates. Members of the study team have provided periodic updates to the community about the progress and preliminary results of our study, for instance at the annual Tar Creek Conference.

Harvard School of Public Health LEAD Agency university of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center logo

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences The Grand Lake Watershed Mercury Study is supported with funding from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences Grant No.1R21ES017941.

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