Helping to Provide Internet Access to Reliable Health Information for At-Risk Populations in Pemiscot County, MO

This partnership is intended to provide library patrons with useful tools and skills in managing their wellness and that of their families. The programs will provide patrons with the knowledge to find health information resources, including ones offered by the National Library of Medicine, and with the technology needed to access those resources. This program would work to level the field for the 40% of residents in Pemiscot County who do not have access to a computer or the internet at their residence. By meeting the viable need of providing internet access at home, the library hopes to make consumer health information more visible and accessible. This project allows patrons to have a private and convenient way to find answers to health problems in their lives and to help them make the decision to seek help. This in turn will mean that Pemiscot County residents are better able to make informed decisions about their health and the health of their loved ones, which is the ultimate goal of the librarys health-information efforts. By promotion and involvement in our Lunch and Learn series, partnering with the county health providers Pemiscot Memorial Health Systems and the Pemiscot County Health Center we hope to provide engaging health information, as well as offering full statistics and ways to improve all aspects of health to individuals in our county. We will survey the population who attend the programs and who check out the internet hotspots to see how their lives have improved as a result of our programming and we will publish these findings in our local newspaper, as well as submitting them to the MO State Library, so that other libraries can learn from our experience. Implementation: Five Wifi hotspots with carrying cases will be purchased by the library for a six-month period. The hotspots will be checked out to patrons for two weeks, with two-week renewals possible after interest in the hot spots is gauged. Implementation of the project will begin as soon as the grant is awarded, with Director Teresa Tidwell delivering publicity about the program to the local newspaper, radio station, and public access television channel, as well as on the librarys website and on the librarys social media outlets. Materials collected from our partners in this plan the county hospital and the county health center will be organized and filed for a convenient method of supplementing the Lunch and Learn program, which will begin in late July or early August of 2019. Some topics included for this program are: Easy Ways to Bring Exercise into your Life, Portion Control for Healthy Eating, Talking with your Doctor, Heart Disease Prevention, including the Check Change Control information from the American Heart Association, Homeopathic Relief for 88opause, Smoking Cessation, Stress and Time Management, and Good and Bad Fats, among other topics. Caruthersville Public Library will provide a healthy lunch from our local Subway restaurant, hopefully encouraging people to drop by for the health information, which will be sent home for further study and review. This will possibly be a jumping off point for the patrons to use the internet hotspots for further information and education on these subjects. Hotspots will be promoted at the Lunch and Learn programs, as well as through the library with flyers and instruction. They will also be announced on the same publicity outlets.

Project Details

Organization Name

Caruthersville Public Library

Organization Type
Public library
Project Lead

Teresa Tidwell

Start Date
June 25, 2019
End Date
April 30, 2020
Funding Amount
General Public
Medically Underserved Areas/Populations