Mission: Peer Health Exchange’s mission is to empower young people with the knowledge, skills, and resources to make healthy decisions.
We do this by training college students to teach a skills-based health curriculum in under-resourced high schools across ...
An amazing profile written about Brittany Merritt, our Chicago Program Director, published by Black Girls Graduate, an online resource whose mission is to inspire and empower black women to change the narrative we see in the media. Brittany’s passion for her work shines through, makes us all proud to have her on this team, and grateful for her leadership in Chicago.
Peer Health Exchange, with our partners, will advance health equity and improve health outcomes for young people.
Our core values form the foundation of our organizational culture and guide our approach to achieving our mission and vision.
We believe that all young people deserve equal access to the knowledge, skills, and resources that support their physical and mental well-being. In partnership with communities, we exist to help young people achieve more positive and equitable health outcomes.
We believe that all young people deserve equitable opportunities to learn about and act for their health. For our part in that work, we deliver a culturally appropriate, trauma-informed curriculum that focuses on the barriers facing the most marginalized youth. To do so, we address the effects of power and privilege in our work and strive to be anti-racist, anti-nationalist, anti-queerphobic, anti-transphobic, anti-sexist, anti-classist, and anti-ableist.
We believe in the potential of every young person. We work to empower young people to make active, informed choices about their health. In turn, we recognize the value each one of us brings to our work. We commit to making full use of our own agency as individuals and as an organization in service of our goals.
We rely on direct and honest exchange for all that we do. We value communication as essential to articulating our vision and goals, forming strong relationships, working through challenges, and learning from and with our young people and partners.
We know that achieving long-term success will require reflection, innovation, and sustained effort. To further our impact, we hold ourselves to meaningful and measurable outcomes, evaluate our successes and challenges openly, and act on what we learn.
PHE believes that we need to attract, engage, and support the very best talent in order to achieve our mission. At PHE, we know that our people make it possible for us to have a significant impact on the teens and communities we serve.
We work to create a diverse, inclusive, and supportive working environment to attract and retain staff and board members from diverse backgrounds, particularly those that mirror the backgrounds of young people we serve. We commit to ensuring that every member of our team has the knowledge, training, and self-awareness they need to deliver on our vision, mission, and equity core value.
Additional benefits include:
Pre-tax Commuter Benefit Program, Employee Assistance Program, Short-term Disability, & Life and AD&D
At PHE, we...
“I feel so lucky to work alongside the very best people I can imagine in doing this work as professionals and as human beings.” - Louise, Co-Founder & CEO
We are an incredibly passionate and committed team that celebrates diversity and are committed to providing equitable opportunities while addressing the effects of power and privilege as we work together towards our vision of advancing health equity. Our greatest asset is the collaborative strength of our Team; and there are many ways to show up for young people and communities at PHE!
Kristopher - Interim Program Manager, Bay Area shares his proudest moment at PHE
Molly - Vice President, Programs and Strategic Partnerships
shares what inspires her commitment to PHE’s impact
“Since I first joined PHE in 2007, recognizing the formidable barriers that prevent young people from accessing health care and health resources has become a major focus of our skills-based curriculum. We continue to think about how we as an organization can break down barriers to health access, through school-based health center tours and other innovative health care partnerships. I am even more confident (and hopeful!) that with our evolved approach PHE is now connecting thousands of young people to resources that can potentially have a major impact on their lives every week.”
Program Delivery: Our Program Staff bring together our business and program models to deliver our quality program in our partner schools.
Development: Our Development Staff raise the philanthropic dollars needed to fuel and sustain our impact.
Partnerships: Our Partnerships Staff build and manage the relationships and connections that allow us to improve health outcomes for young people.
Infrastructure & Support: Our Infrastructure Staff lead the org-wide planning to support long-range sustainability of our organization.
Temporary & Internship Opportunities: Our Temporary Staff contribute to the achievement of our mission and our full Team is strengthened by their contributions.
Since 2003, PHE has provided over 115,000 high school students with quality health education taught by over 8,500 college volunteers. In 2016, PHE was awarded the Society of Public Health Education (SOPHE) Program Excellence Award, an honor given to one organization each year to recognize high quality in health education programming.
Our current strategic plan has three major priorities:
We can’t – and don’t want to - do this work alone. We believe in the power of #OnePHE, the shared purpose of our Volunteers, College and High School Partners, Board Members, Health Systems, & Community Members in working towards the same vision, mission, and goals; and alignment around our core values. Our partners in this work are key to improving the health outcomes for young people and driving our impact. To learn more about Volunteering with us, click HERE!
I worked at Peer Health Exchange full-time (More than 10 years)
Wonderful people--passionate, committed to equity, smart, innovative and above all, caring.
Innovative program model and an openness to continually improve that model and deepen impact for young people
Have focused a lot on building org culture in recent years
PHE is a very ambitious, fast-paced organization that sometimes struggles with prioritization and takes on too much
PHE is still figuring out how to thrive as a multi-site organization that is now becoming open to having remote employees. A lot of our work happened by video-conference (even with colleagues located in my same city) and over time I felt the lack of a strong, in-person office culture in the office where I was based. Many of the local offices outside of the headquarters have been able to maintain that more successfully than the national office.
Advice to Management
Keep working on org culture, including office culture
I applied online. I interviewed at Peer Health Exchange.
Probably one of the worst interview experiences I've had in terms of process, organization, and feedback. I was told on three separate occasions they would be making final decisions only to be given more "exercises"--to me that translates into more free labor. I was extremely disappointed in their lack of acknowledgement of the different inequities prevalent within their own org and in the health sector. Management expressed an extreme interest in me that felt like a "diversity hire." They showed no consideration for my time and by the end of the process I would not have accepted an offer if I had gotten one. It was pretty obvious by the end of the process that management doesn't have a grasp on health equity and unclear how to approach it. I really resonated with the mission, but like any non-profit theres a level of white savior complex persistent. I only hope the poc who do work there are valued and heard.
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