It is the end of an era for two Joplin charities working together to help the families affected by the 2011 Joplin tornado.
The partnership between the Salvation Army and Joplin Area Habitat for Humanity wrapped up with the completion of construction of a new home for Dillon Sprague and his fiancee, Kristen Asbell, who on Monday were given the keys.
The partnership, begun in 2014, resulted in the construction of 22 homes, 45 tornado shelters and 45 homeowner repair projects related to the tornado. Joplin Area Habitat for Humanity coordinated the building, and money for the projects came from more than $2 million in grant funding from the Salvation Army.
The completion of the final home marks one of the final milestones in the recovery from a disaster that rocked and could have shattered this community. Instead, our city came together to rebuild, and the response invigorated not just a recovery but also a period of new growth.
The task for Joplin at this point is to nurture that cooperative spirit while residents continue to step up to grow and shape our community for the future. The process may not always be comfortable, but it is necessary.
Newton County school districts have entered a partnership with Freeman Neosho Hospital in a new telemedicine system that will provide health care access to students there.
A mobile telemedicine cart installed in each district will allow a patient to be seen in real time by a medical provider, without leaving the school nurse’s office. Parents can also participate in the call.
Diamond Superintendent Keith White said it will keep healthy children in school and provide access to basic health care. The program can help fill the gap for parents who may have lost their jobs or health care coverage because of COVID-19.
That’s a good thing.
Congratulations are due a 2020 Joplin High School graduate who was honored recently with the Congressional Award Gold Medal, the top award that Congress bestows upon a youth civilian.
Grace Carter was one of 450 students across the nation to receive the awards given annually to student leaders who have “committed themselves to years of goal setting and community engagement,” program leaders said.
Way to go, Grace.