Faculty Service-Learning Students as Home-Visitors: Outcomes of a Lifestyle Modification Program for Vulnerable Families With Residents in Rural Indonesian Communities

Chui Ping Phyllis Pang, Sau Ting Cynthia Wu (Corresponding Author), Man Hon Chung, Wai Hang Kwok

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleTeaching and learningpeer-review


Background: Risks attributed to chronic diseases, cancer, musculoskeletal discomfort, and infectious diseases among Indonesians were found to be associated with lifestyle behaviors, particularly in rural areas. The aim of this study was to examine the outcomes of a home-visiting lifestyle modification program on improving health risk behaviors among Indonesians living in rural areas.

Methods: A total of 160 Indonesians living in rural hamlets in the Yogyakarta Region of Indonesia participated in the program in the period of June 21 to July 21, 2019. In the pre-intervention home interview, learning needs of diet, exercise, hand hygiene, and substance use were identified by using structured assessment tools. In the next home visit, the visitors provided health education and facilitated lifestyle planning based on the related affective and cognitive domains of learning. Subsequent follow-up interviews were conducted 3 weeks after intervention.

Results: The results showed that the self-reported intake of vegetables, fruits, meat and salt, cooking with less oil, hand hygiene before eating, number of cigarettes smoked, and symptoms of muscle stiffness significantly improved after the intervention. The lifestyle modification program consisted of the affective and cognitive domains of learning, and could lead to the target behavioral changes in self-reported and observable measures over 1 month.

Conclusions: The findings contributed to the framework of community-based health education for health risk reduction and behavioral modification in developing rural communities where health care resources were limited. Further studies with control groups and vigorous objective measures were recommended to elucidate its long-term impacts. The factors leading to its sustainability concerning collaborative care partnerships between community residents and faculty resources are worthy of continued exploration.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberhttps://doi.org/10.3389/fpubh.2021.597851
JournalFrontiers in Public Health
Publication statusPublished - 12 May 2021


  • service-learning
  • home-visit
  • lifestyle modification
  • rural Indonesian
  • diet
  • exercise
  • smoking
  • hand hygiene

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