The Chicago Journal

ourHealth Is an Online Platform That Seeks to Grant Access to Health Information for the Black Community

Healthcare is a universal human right that should be granted to people, regardless of their race, religion, or social condition. However, the Black community has always been the recipient of inequality in terms of quality. ourHealth is a social community geared toward bettering access to information regarding health founded by Eric Chiyembekeza.

Chiyembekeza is a 30-year-old member of the community who works in healthcare. He is in charge of operations of federally qualified health centers that serve underserved communities. Chiyembekeza has watched the Black community receive significantly poorer health outcomes. His mother has had lupus for nearly 20 years, an aunt passed away from cancer, and he lost his sister to breast cancer.

Working in healthcare has made him even more aware of the disconnect between people who access information and people who need to hear it. Chiyembekeza has seen the barrier where cultural differences are often unaccounted for with disseminated information. As a member of the Black community, he had to do something to meet the community’s needs.

He created ourHealth, a social community available on mobile and web and a streaming platform to increase visibility and accessibility of information to Black health. The mobile app is meant to bring the Black health community together so they can share valuable information about health care, mental health, nutrition, self-care, fitness, yoga, meditation, and many other areas.

Chiyembekeza was aware that there had never been a standalone Black health community. So he made it a point to create and own a streaming platform rather than the antiquated cable television approach. ourHealth was made to bridge the chasm that exists between the voices of Black health, from the past generation to the newer millennials in the industry.

ourHealth aggregates the information of their Black health influencers and the community that needs the information. Although their health needs are not widely addressed, their health outcomes have been, and they are the poorest of any group in the country.

Chiyembekeza and his team are actively partnering with video content creators so they can complete the streaming component of ourHealth Community. The content creators who decide to partner with them will also be compensated. They are getting information from lawmakers to the laymen.

ourHealth wants to help individuals who show interest in contributing to a mobile community that is specifically designed to combat health inequities by addressing social determinants of health. To decrease the barriers to access, they created a free app available on both iOS and Android.

The app is currently being used by different races and people from the healthcare field and even those who aren’t. ourHealth is open and inviting but carries a primary mission of increasing visibility and accessibility of information and resources related to Black health.

With original ourHealth video content, they will operate on a subscription model that allows them to pay royalties to the creators for their videos’ unique views. They plan to have a free version of the streaming site supported by advertisers who align with their mission and community in the future.

ourHealth is constantly growing, and they want to be the go-to resource for people of color interested in information related to their health.

To find out more about ourHealth, you may visit their website.

Lawrence R. Armstrong: Dynamic Architect, Designer, and Visual Artist Rolled in One

Creating visually stimulating designs that inspire people is one of Lawrence R. Armstrong’s greatest passions as a master architect and visual artist. Not only is he an accomplished architect and designer, becoming CEO of Ware Malcomb for over 28 years, an award-winning international architecture firm, he also prioritizes self-expression to showcase his renaissance approach to life and motivate people to pursue their dreams at the same time.  

Lawrence R. Armstrong considers himself a student of art all of his life. He often draws inspiration from the diverse education that he was privileged to experience in life, and he combines this with his imagination to create something breathtaking. Armstrong earned his Architecture degree from Kent State University. During his time at the university, he mastered creating form and figure inspired by nature’s unique beauty. His work in both art and architecture is a continuous exploration and unraveling of layers. After completing his degree from Kent State University, Lawrence R. Armstrong spent a semester studying in Italy. It was during his stay in Italy that he developed a deep appreciation and fascination with classical architecture. 

Very few architects accomplish what Lawrence R. Armstrong has achieved in his professional career, such as being a licensed architect in more than 40 states in the country. Moreover, he is also an accredited professional of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) through the United States Green Building Council (USGBC). Additionally, Armstrong has been a guest lecturer at the USC Lusk Center for Real Estate, Graduate Real Estate Program. Aside from this, he also became a design juror for the Fourth Year Integrated Design Project for Kent State University. 

Most of Lawrence R. Armstrong’s artworks are inspired by modern architectural works done by the likes of Arnoldi, Warhol, Pollack, Corbusier, Eisenman, Chihuly, and Meier, to mention a few. His travels in Europe, Japan, Latin America, Middle East, and North America have allowed him to explore these regions’ diverse cultures from their art to music, people, events, and natural environment. He then finds himself combining designs in his mind as influenced by the sights he encounters in his travels. Once the design in his mind becomes a clear picture, he would create a sketch to bring life. 

The design community recognizes Lawrence R. Armstrong as an influential personality in the industry, and it is for this reason, he has gathered numerous awards throughout his professional career. His awards include the Ernst and Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award and National Finalist in 2008, ATIM’s Top 60 Masters of Contemporary Art, a Palm Art Award 2016 nominee, Certificate of Excellence from the Sandro Botticelli Prize during the Artavita 11th Contest, ATIM Masters Award, ATIM Choice Award, and the AIA Honor Award, to mention a few. 

As a result of his undeniable success in the field of architecture and as a visual artist, Lawrence R. Armstrong has been invited to speak in several panels for the NAIOP and other commercial real estate groups. He has also been featured in several media platforms that include OC Metro, Real Estate Business Online, Development Magazine, and Professional Report Magazine. 

Overall, Lawrence R. Armstrong is often admired by his peers and clients because of his strategic and visionary approach in running his business that also employs creativity and innovation as much as possible. 

Armstrong is also a fan of many of his fellow designers and draws inspiration from their design style on occasion. As he continues to fuel his passion for art and architecture, Lawrence R. Armstrong will continue to spend time in his art studio and traveling with his camera and sketchbooks.

Find out more about Lawrence Armstrong by visiting his website. Follow his Facebook and Instagram accounts for updates.