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Midwest Matters March 7th, 2021
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GMR Funds Two New COVID-Focused Outreach Awards

Posted by on January 27th, 2021 Posted in: Blog, Funding, Outreach


The GMR is excited to announce that two institutions have been awarded funding to implement quick response COVID-19 health information outreach projects. The projects are funded through the GMR in an effort to enable organizations to develop and offer programs that will impact health literacy and health information needs related to COVID-19. A short description of the two funded projects follow.

University of Minnesota Duluth – Led by Dr. Anna Wirta Kosobuski

This project, titled Kina (“Together”), will serve Native American (Ojibwe) youth in northern Minnesota. Kina will develop and strengthen coping mechanisms and resiliency among Native American youth using activities grounded in known protective factors such as connectedness, positive socialization and belonging, personal wellness, self-efficacy, respect and cultural pride. This will be achieved using virtual, culturally tailored youth activities to promote 1) COVID-19 awareness, 2) practice of COVID-19 safety, and 3) COVID-19 and online media literacy. Outcomes of the project include an increase in basic understanding of virus and COVID-19 information and improved savvy regarding trustworthiness of content of internet-based information among child and youth participants. A key component of this award will include the use of MedlinePlus to identify trustworthy COVID-19 information.

Ohio University – Led by Dr. Melissa Thomas

This project, titled “Addressing COVID-19 Concerns in Amish Country”, aims to develop and disseminate a culturally sensitive COVID-19 Fact Sheet for Amish communities and to provide a COVID-19 hotline to Amish community members staffed by a trained community member who can speak the primary language and address questions and misinformation. The proposed outreach program is the first to specifically address the cultural and access needs of COVID-19 health information among Amish communities and can serve as a best practices model that can be replicated across the country. One outcome from this award aims to see a 30 percent increase in fact-based information about COVID-19 and vaccines when compared to the 2020 Amish COVID-19 survey.

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This project has been funded in whole or in part with Federal funds from the National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services, under Grant Number 1UG4LM012346 with The University of Iowa.

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