The Portage County Health Department recently recognized Amie Cajka as the 2013 Friends of Public Health Award recipient at the annual Portage County Health Department Advisory Council Meeting.
The Friends of Public Health Award is given to individuals who demonstrate commitment to the health of Portage County residents through actions that prove leadership or advocacy regarding issues that impact the health and safety of Portage County residents.
Cajka continually serves Portage County in her daily activities. She is the director of Community Relations for the Mental Health & Recovery Board of Portage County where she spends most of her time communicating with county residents about how to access services and collaborating on behalf of the board with other organizations to improve life for persons with mental illness and addictions in Portage County.
One of her responsibilities is to make sure that the Mental Health & Recovery Board and its local agencies are ready to aid the community in times of disaster while striving to reduce mental health and addiction problems resulting from these emergencies.
Cajka also volunteers as a Public Information Officer or PIO with the Incident Management Assistance Team of Portage County. It was in this capacity that the health department became acquainted with her as their friend of public health.
Cajka gave of her time to the health department during the H1N1 pandemic and was instrumental in assisting the health department in getting information to the public about the mass immunization clinics as well as general information on public health safety. This past summer she assisted the health department in the education efforts for keeping fair goers safe from the new H3N2 swine flu at the county fair. She was instrumental in utilizing her social media expertise in surveillance efforts and rumor control.
Cajka continues to be a friend of public health as the leader of several public information groups in the county as well as continuing to serve as a backup PIO for the health department.