Center for the study of community health

Community Health Scholars Pilot Grant Program RFP

The UAB Center for the Study of Community Health (CSCH) invites applications for its 2023 Community Health Scholars (CHS) pilot grant program. Funding is for community-based participatory research (CBPR) to address issues connected to health in the community, especially social determinants of health.

CSCH – one of 28 University-wide Interdisciplinary Research Centers and one of 26 Prevention Research Centers (PRCs) designated nationally by CDC – plays a leading role in the development of CBPR at UAB. Since it began offering pilot research funding in 2009, CSCH has invested over $1.2 million in 59 projects awarded to UAB faculty representing 25 divisions/departments within 8 Schools/CAS and over 70 community partner organizations. These projects have leveraged their results for over $21 million in additional grants and other support.

One-year pilot grants are available to UAB faculty, with preference given to teams that include junior faculty. Pilot funding is intended to provide initial support for innovative projects to benefit our local communities. Proposals from any discipline on campus are encouraged, meeting the following criteria:

  1.  The proposed project can be completed within one (1) year;
  2.  The project demonstrates significant potential for future extramural funding; and
  3. An established community partner (not just a community advisory board) actively participates in the development, design, implementation, and evaluation of the project.

Pilot projects are expected to lead to publications related to the project and ultimately to an R01 or similar application for extramural funding.

Types of proposals solicited. CSCH will consider LOIs regarding preliminary CBPR research projects, especially those related to youth and families, socioemotional factors (e.g. social isolation, fear), risk factors (e.g. risk behaviors, substance use, and violence), protective factors (skills training, mentoring, stress/conflict management),  adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), education, and community. The preferred geographic area is the City of Birmingham. Proposed projects may be one of the following types:

  • Demonstration projects (typical awards of $20,000 to $35,000): Ready-to-execute projects that address an important issue directly relevant to local Birmingham communities, including social determinants of health.
  • Translation (typical awards of $20,000 – $35,000): Translation of a previous Community Health Scholars project or another community-based project to Birmingham neighborhoods.
  • Preliminary Data (typical awards of $5,000 – $10,000): Collection and analysis of quantitative or qualitative data that would lead to either a CHS project or extramural funding in the following year.
  • Program Evaluation (typical awards of $5,000 – $10,000): Evaluation of community-based programs.
  • Training Program Development (typical awards of $5,000 – $10,000): Development of training programs to increase capacity or otherwise benefit the community.
  • Community Health Innovation & Entrepreneur Projects (typically awards of $15,000 – $25,000):  Creative and innovative approaches to neighborhood/community-based concerns or interests.

For FY2024 letters of intent (LOIs) are accepted at any time.  LOIs will be reviewed on the 15th of every month.

An LOI is required to ensure feedback to the investigator prior to submitting a full application. The LOI should include the following:

  • Anticipated start date
  • Proposed project title
  • Project purpose
  • PI name/s and UAB College/School
  • Key personnel name/s and College/School or organization (UAB or otherwise)
  • Funding category type (of the 6 funding types above)
  • Estimated budget
  • Brief project description highlighting background and significance (limit 250 words)
  • Name and short description of the community partner for this project.

Please include the above details in a single PDF document emailed to

Those invited to submit a full proposal will be given application details.

Support from individuals experienced in CBPR and community health research is available, and CSCH can help identify a potential community partner.

Applicants are encouraged to ensure they are using community-based theories and research relevant to their area of study.

Available funds:  A total of to $150,000 is available for awards.

Number of awards: TBD based on individual award amounts

Award Period: 1 year

Grantees will provide a brief progress report every six months. A final report, including budget report showing expenditures, is required.

Grantees will be encouraged to present their findings at campus and local research symposia and national scientific conferences.

For questions about application procedures, please contact Mary B Evans, Deputy Director, at 205-975-8387 or

UAB the University of Alabama at Birmingham home
UAB is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer committed to fostering a diverse, equitable and family-friendly environment in which all faculty and staff can excel and achieve work/life balance irrespective of race, national origin, age, genetic or family medical history, gender, faith, gender identity and expression as well as sexual orientation. UAB also encourages applications from individuals with disabilities and veterans.