Health and resource fair assists unhoused citizens

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Health screenings were provided by Rosalind Yarber and Shirley Perry of Jackson-Hinds Comprehensive Health Center.

JANS – The first Thursday of each month is a brighter day for residents at the Billy Brumfield Men’s Shelter.  Each month, the  Institute for the Advancement of Minority Health and its partners provide a plethora of services for shelter residents and other unhoused individuals via its A Brighter Day Resource and Health Fair.

On May 4, 2023, over 40 unhoused men took advantage of the opportunity to receive HIV/AIDS tests, COVID vaccinations, blood pressure screenings, glucose screenings, and tobacco cessation products/information.  Cellular devices and food were provided for free. Melvin Young (DJ Mailman) of WJMI (99 Jams) radio station kept the atmosphere lively with music. 

In Mississippi, an estimated 1,107 people are experiencing homelessness.  That equals 3.7 people for every 10,000 according to a report from the National Alliance to End Homelessness.  Unhoused individuals are often exposed to violence and other traumatic experiences. These experiences often lead to the participation in risky behavior in order to survive in their environment.  

“Because there are multiple reasons for homelessness, there is not a single solution,” said Dr. Sandra Melvin, CEO/founder, Institute for the Advancement of Minority Health.  “Our agency is committed to providing services to meet the needs of those currently unhoused.  Via our partnerships, we will continue to deliver access to essential items and provisions as often as possible.”

Partners for this resource and health fair were MS Move, Jackson Hinds Comprehensive Health Center, Meet Your Needs Service, WJMI, Gilmer Grooming, and B&B Barbecue.  

For more information or to partner with the institute, call  769-572-5263 or send an email to

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Health and resource fair assists unhoused citizens

By Jackson Advocate News Service
May 22, 2023