As part of the Community Engagement Core’s social media campaign #ProtectResponde, postdoctoral researcher Dr. Nancy Cardona will be making weekly appearances on the Puerto Rican radio show Radar Noticioso (News Radar). With host Professor Ramón Santana, Dr. Cardona will discuss environmental contamination and strategies for reducing exposure, every Tuesday at 9am through the end of the social media campaign.

Radar Noticioso started 3 years ago as a forum for community groups, project leaders, and others engaged in work that impacts the community, particularly in the areas of health, education, and natural resources. The weekly, two-hour show is broadcast on WISA 1390 AM, which is available throughout the northern karst region of Puerto Rico—a total of 500,000 households that also happen to be in the PROTECT study area. Host Ramón Santana is a sociologist with experience in teaching, government, and the development of community programming, including around family health. The radio show is also broadcast on Facebook Live.

In her first “Cápsulas Informativas (Informative Capsule)” appearance on Radar Noticioso, on June 22nd, Dr. Cardona introduced the work of the PROTECT research center in Puerto Rico. She provided an environmental health history of the northern karst area, which includes 10 of the 22 superfund sites in Puerto Rico. She also discussed the historically high rates of preterm birth on the island and how PROTECT’s transdisciplinary approaches in this multi-institutional center have answered questions about the impacts of environmental contamination on preterm birth. Additionally, Dr. Cardona emphasized the Community Engagement Core’s work reporting back results to participants and the new initiatives in the #PROTECTResponde campaign. An archive of the discussion is available on Facebook (Dr. Cardona appears around 52:00-1:15:00 in the preceding link.)

In her second appearance, Dr. Cardona  provided information on a variety of environmental health topics, answering the questions: What is the chemical substance? How are we exposed? How can we reduce our exposure? She also provided a recipe for a homemade cleaning product that doesn’t include harmful chemical substances.

As a current postdoc and a former PhD candidate with PROTECT, Dr. Cardona has extensive experience with the center and environmental health research and community engagement in Puerto Rico. In 2017, she received a K.C. Donnelly Externship Award and traveled to the University of Arizona Superfund Research Center, where she focused on building skills in developing citizen science or participatory research projects. She returned to Puerto Rico and developed a citizen science project for children in an underserved community in Toa Baja, PR. After taking a one-year postdoctoral position with the University of Rochester Clinical and Translation Science Institute, Dr. Cardona returned to PROTECT in 2020 with an ECHO Diversity Supplement, supporting her research on chemical exposures and determinants of health as well as community engagement projects and activities.

Dr. Cardona will appear on Radar Noticioso each week to discuss environmental and public health issues in Puerto Rico, with a focus on PROTECT research everyone other week. Tune in each Tuesday on WISA 1390 AM or the WISA 1390 Facebook page at 9am to hear that week’s “Cápsulas Informativa” on environmental health in Puerto Rico.

Graphic created by the PROTECT Community Engagement Core to promote Dr. Cardona’s appearances on Radar Noticioso. The speech bubble says, “PROTECT Responds: Informative capsules about environmental contaminants and health.”