World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Community Health and Development


African mother and child.

Continuous Designation of WHO Collaborating Centre at KU since 2004

The WHO Collaborating Centre at KU received official designation by the World Health Organization in 2004. The WHO CC received re-designation through 2025. Reporting to the KU Chancellor, the WHO CC is a part of KU’s Center for Community Health and Development.

As a WHO Collaborating Centre, we work closely with partners at the WHO Regional Office for the Americas/Pan American Health Organization (Washington, DC), the WHO Regional Office for Africa (Brazzaville, Congo), the World Health Organization-Headquarters (Geneva), and with communities and centers locally and globally.

Mission and Objectives

Our mission is to promote community health and development through capacity building, participatory research, and co-learning in a global community.

The WHO Centre at KU has two primary objectives:

  • Build capacity for community health and development locally and globally using expanded resources of the Community Tool Box (CTB).
  • Use participatory research methods to expand the evidence base for how communities create conditions that promote health and health equity.

Working in collaboration with partners, we hope to contribute to local and global efforts to promote health and health equity.

Some Accomplishments of the WHO CC

  • Participatory research methods to expand the evidence base for processes that increase community/system change and associated improvement in population health.
  • Translation of the open source Community Tool Box into Spanish. Used by over 5 million unique users in over 200 countries, the CTB contains over 7,000 pages of practical information for community assessment, strategic planning, intervention, evaluation, advocacy, and sustaining the effort.
  • Translation of the open source Community Tool Box (CTB) into Arabic. A collaboration with the WHO CC at the American University of Beirut, the Arabic version is 50% complete.
  • In collaboration with the Pan American Health Association and partners, contributed to the development and launch of the PAHO Guide for Documenting Health Promotion Experiences.
  • Contributing to the development and launch of the PAHO Health Promotion Course, a collaboration among the Pan American Health Organization and partners.
  • Development and launch of the WHO Africa Action Toolkit for Addressing Social Determinants of Health. A collaboration with the WHO Regional Office for Africa, this mobile-friendly tool is also available in French.
  • Monitoring and evaluation of the Ebola response effort in affected communities in Liberia. A collaboration with the WHO Regional Office for Africa, this led to several case studies of what it took to bend the curve with the Ebola Virus Disease outbreak in 2014-2015.
  • Contributing to the development of a Framework for Community Engagement, a collaboration with the WHO-Headquarters’ Health Systems and Innovations Cluster and partners.
  • Development of a platform for supporting collaborative action on the Sustainable Development Goals by addressing social determinants of health. A collaboration with the WHO-Headquarters’ social determinants of health unit, this platform will be used to enhance collaboration and coordination among those working on SDH, health in all policies, and SDGs.

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Logic Model

This framework outlines the activities, outputs, and intended outcomes of the WHO Collaborating Centre at KU.

WHO Collaborating Centre Fellows

These colleagues help support the mission of the WHO Collaborating Centre at Kansas University.