Alpha Kappa Alpha Two-Day Mississippi Health Project Vaccinates Hundreds Against COVID-19 in Mound Bayou and Greenville
MISSISSIPPI DELTA – Nearly 100 years after its first Mississippi Health Project, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.® (AKA) revisited the Mississippi Delta to host a health and COVID-19 vaccination event for residents of Mound Bayou and Greenville, MS. Partnering with local healthcare providers Delta Health Centers, Walgreens, and Urgent Primary Care of Clarksdale, the two-day event enabled 330 residents to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. Additionally, 120 glucose and cholesterol tests, 71 HIV tests, 50 eye exams including 31 eye exams for school-aged children and personal protective equipment were also administered.
Originally conducted over six consecutive summers in Mississippi in the 1930s, the AKA Mississippi Health Project was created to provide much-needed healthcare services to Mound Bayou and Greenville residents. The sorority developed a network of members and volunteers to create a mobile health clinic during one of the most challenging periods in American history.
Under its international community service program, AKA established and has been delivering Pop-Up Health Programs to increase knowledge and awareness of COVID-19, provide greater access to COVID vaccines, and deliver much-needed support services. Alpha Kappa Alpha partnered with Delta Health Services in Mound Bayou to provide free COVID-19 vaccinations and other healthcare services such as blood pressure monitoring, cholesterol and glucose testing, and HIV testing, along with COVID-19 educational materials. In Greenville, the sorority partnered with Walgreens and Urgent and Primary Care of Clarksdale.
“We are extremely pleased that hundreds of people participated in our Alpha Kappa Alpha Mississippi Health Project. Lack of access to healthcare in rural Mississippi communities has been an ongoing barrier for this segment of America, and that’s why the work of our sorority to provide education, access to COVID-19 vaccinations, and other health services is so important,” said Alpha Kappa Alpha International President & CEO Dr. Glenda Glover. “We are glad that our partners Delta Health Services, Walgreens, and Urgent and Primary Care of Clarksdale understand the need and have joined us to offer COVID-19 vaccinations and other necessary health services in the Mississippi Delta.”
The COVID vaccinations took place on June 3rd at Delta Health Center in Mound Bayou, MS, and on June 4th at the Yazoo Mississippi Valley Train Depot and at Walgreens in Greenville, MS. Participating residents who were vaccinated received a cash gift card and were entered into a drawing for a 60-inch Smart TV. Activities and giveaways for families with children, high school-bound teens, and college-bound students were also provided.
Alpha Kappa Alpha’s commitment to the Mississippi Delta is one of several pop-up events that have taken place across the country over the last three years. Most of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority’s traveling health events have included its 3D mobile mammogram unit which provides free mammograms to uninsured women. The mobile mammography unit will travel to Mound Bayou in October 2021 for the second installment of the sorority’s two-part series to provide services to residents of the Mississippi Delta.
“Since our founding 113 years ago, Alpha Kappa Alpha has a rich legacy of offering innovative programs that improve the health and welfare of women, men, and children around the world. During this critical time of a global pandemic, our commitment continues as we provide COVID vaccines. Likewise, our AKA 3D Mammography Mobile Unit has helped save lives by providing free breast cancer screenings,” said Glover.