Healthy Learners began serving the students of Allendale County in the fall of 2005. The program serves elementary, middle and high school students who are in need and without resources. This includes students who are covered by Medicaid. Transportation to and from school to appointments is a unique and vital link to the success of the Healthy Learners program.
An overview of the needs of the children of Allendale County outlines several important facts. The Small Area Health Insurance Estimates (SAHIE) program states that 20.7 % of residents under the age of 18 are uninsured. According to the State Department of Education’s website, 81.75% of the students in Allendale County School District qualified for free or reduced lunch in 2008. The 2008 Kid’s Count data reports that 67.5% of parents with children ages 6-17 years old were in the labor force, however 47.7% of children in the same age group lived in poverty. Children in single parent families made up 67.1% of all the county’s children living in poverty. Also according to Kid’s Count data, 38.3% of students do not graduate from school.
Families with children who are in need and without resources are often unable to meet the financial obligations of health care and the lack of transportation makes health care access even more difficult. In the spirit of the Sisters of Charity of St. Augustine, Healthy Learners is devoted to removing children’s health barriers to learning with love and compassion for the children of Allendale County by providing access to health care.
For more information about Healthy Learners Allendale call Shelley Thomas, Program Manager at (803) 584-7663 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.