Deena Haque, a third year student at Brown University and a Bonner Community Fellow at the Swearer Center, is a student leader active in addressing health challenges in the local Greater Providence community. During her time as a Bonner Community Fellow she has partnered with Clinica Esperanza and serves as a volunteer and leader within their organization. Through the clinic’s volunteer program Deena offers support on data projects, assists with outreach events, and volunteer management. Deena fosters a belief that a community like Brown can play an active part in addressing challenges to healthcare.
Growing up in a diverse, low-income neighborhood in Queens, I was surrounded by a community with a passion for service and one that strived to serve its residents with humility and empathy. And this passion was something so inherently ingrained in me, it was no surprise that I became involved with the Swearer Center for Public Service once I got to Brown, more specifically the Bonner community fellowship. Through the Bonner program, I work with Clinica Esperanza which is a free clinic that provides healthcare services to uninsured, primarily Spanish-speaking patients. Outside of patient care, the clinic has designed and implemented many programs, such as Vida Sana, which serve as ways to educate patients about healthy lifestyles and proper nutrition. My involvement with the Swearer Center also led me to Health and Education for All (HAEFA) which is a nonprofit providing health care and education-based programs to Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh. Both Clinica Esperanza and HAEFA utilize education as a primary tool for making health knowledge more accessible to marginalized communities. This work has been meaningful to me as these values are something I would like to carry with me in the future communities I serve.