Jenetta Thomas is a Peer Advocate for the Ohio Equity Institute (OEI). OEI is a statewide program—run locally by Hamilton County Public Health (HCPH)—to reduce racial and ethnic disparities in infant mortality. HCPH works with Cradle Cincinnati and the Cincinnati Health Department to implement and support infant mortality initiatives in the 45240 and 45225 zip code areas.
OEI Peer Advocates identify pregnant moms within their community, connect them to resources and services, and provide support as their “champion.”
Family: Jenetta has two daughters. Janyla is 8 years old and Aurielle is 15 months old.
Job/School: Jenetta is a nurse at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. She is also one semester away from completing a master’s degree in Public Health.
Community: Forest Park.
Interesting Fact: Jenetta is a big fan of Wheel of Fortune. “I know it’s a classic, but I’m pretty good at solving those puzzles,” she said. “I just have to figure out how to get on the show!”
Making a Difference with WeTHRIVE! and OEI: Jenetta completed OEI training in safe sleep for infants in July 2017 and has conducted safe sleep training sessions at Babies R Us, community health days, and community child care centers. She will continue to share her knowledge with families and caregivers at childcare centers, church nurseries, and more.
Becoming a Peer Advocate was an easy choice for Jenetta. As a nurse, her favorite patients have always been babies. In her graduate program, she is focusing on infant mortality. She enjoys providing information and dispelling myths about how babies should sleep.
“It has always saddened me to see things happen that didn’t have to all because of a lack of knowledge of what a parent or family member didn’t know,” Jenetta said. “I believe if we continue to get the message of safe sleep out to the community, there will be better outcomes for all.”