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 2022 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 25 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 million in 52 projects awarded to UAB faculty representing 25 divisions/departments within 8 Schools/CAS and over 60 community partner organizations. These projects have leveraged their results for over $20 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 but must meet 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 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.

A Letter of Intent (LOI) is due May 16, 2022: 

  • 2 pages (single spaced, Arial 11 point or larger with .5” margins) maximum, plus Principal Investigator’s Biosketch (NIH/NSF preferred). The LOI should include the following elements:
    • Title and purpose of project
    • Names of PI and other investigators/key personnel
    • Project description highlighting background and significance, research question/s, specific aims, research/evaluation design, size (estimate), and procedures for the project including relevant statistical analyses
    • Category of funding from the options below and funding amount (estimate) sought

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)

A committee will review all submissions and select the most competitive for development of a full application; specific instructions will be provided to those selected.

Support from individuals experienced in CBPR and community health research is available, and CSCH can help identify a potential community partner given enough time before the application is due.

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 $120,000 is available for awards.

Number of awards: TBD based on individual award amounts

Award Period: 1 year

LOI deadline is May 16, 2022. The LOI packet must be submitted in a single PDF file to Mary Evans at

Invitations for full application will be sent by June 1, 2022.

Deadline for full applications (4 pages plus attachments) is July 11, 2022, at 11:59PM Central.

Awarded projects have an estimated start date of September 15, 2022.

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 Dr. Jeff Walker, Director, at or Mary B Evans, Deputy Director, at 975-8387 or

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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.