Minnesota Department of Health

Eliminating Health Disparities Initiative, (EHDI), 2017 – Present

Rainbow Research, in partnership with the University of Minnesota’s (UMN) Prevention Research Center (PRC), is providing evaluation technical assistance and support to strengthen the capacity of Eliminating Health Disparities Initiative (EHDI) community grantees. Additionally Rainbow and PRC are supporting EHDI through the creation of a community of practice and the identification of shared measurements across grantees in each priority health area. Lastly, Rainbow and PRC will help each grantee communicate their stories

Violence Against Asian Women and Children, 2016


This landmark study, commissioned by the Minnesota State Legislature and led by the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH), in partnership with the Council on Asian Pacific Minnesotans, Department of Public Safety (DPS) and Department of Human Services (DHS), was the first major study of violence against Asian women and children in Minnesota. Rainbow Research was responsible for coordinating the Working Group activities including organizing, convening and facilitating the Working Group meetings, research design and implementation, and completing the report as required by the Legislature. In this study we examined the types and prevalence of violence against Asian women and children, as well as the cultural contexts for this violence. Understanding these contexts was critical to the development of effective strategies to address violence against Asian women and children.

The goals of the project:

1. Establish baseline information on the nature, scope and prevalence of violence against Asian women and children in Minnesota through qualitative and quantitative data gathering and analysis

2. Submit a report with recommendations on how to address and prevent violence against Asian women and children in Minnesota by January 1, 2017.

Based on the legislative charge and the Working Group discussions, this study focused on the prevalence and nature of domestic/intimate partner violence, sexual assault, abusive international marriage, stalking and trafficking.

Research Design

This study utilized a mixed methods approach to gather quantitative and qualitative data from primary and secondary sources. The primary data collection included a new survey of adult Asian women called the Minnesota Asian Women’s Health Survey (MAWHS), key informant interviews, and focus groups with survivors; secondary data analysis included existing data from the Minnesota Student Survey of middle school and high school youth, and two college surveys (details below). Quantitative data collection and analysis was led by Co-Principal Investigator, Dr. Ruby Nguyen, University of Minnesota School of Public Health.

Uniquely Rainbow Research

Working in partnership with community cultural organizations:

To ensure adequate sample size, we designed a community based convenience sample to supplement the randomly sampled mail-based survey. Community organizations including Hmong American Partnership, SEWA – AIFW (Asian Indian Family Wellness), Lao Assistance Center of Minnesota, Vietnamese Social Services, and Asian Women United Minnesota participated in trainings on survey administration, consent, and translation for research. Staff from these organization gave critical feedback on all aspects of the study design and also worked alongside us to recruit participants.

Trauma-informed lens:

This work required special attention to ensure the study not only avoided re-traumatizing survivors, but when possible, also empowered them and connected them to a broader range of community resources. All study staff were trained on Asian-centered trauma-informed research practices from Asian Women United Minnesota. Rainbow staff in turn brought our previous experience working in the sexual and domestic violence fields.