Fairfield Ledger

Mt. Pleasant News   Wash Journal
Neighbors Growing Together | Sep 19, 2018

Resource fair draws crowd

By Jon Gilrain, Ledger correspondent | Mar 06, 2018
Photo by: JON GILRAIN/Ledger photo Green Iowa Americorps representatives Lacey Teal, left, and Mary Brasch educate the public about their organization Friday night during the Health and Resource Fair at Fairfield Middle School.

The Fairfield Community School District held its second annual Health and Resource Fair Friday at Fairfield Middle School. The event featured over 30 businesses and agencies engaging with residents about their many services for children and families.

The event, organized by Fairfield Middle School counselor Jay Thompson, featured movies for children and a free meal to the first 300 attendees. Door prizes such as tablet computers and a flat-screen television were awarded.

Afton Hallauer, Fairfield Public Library’s youth services librarian, previewed a raft of activities scheduled for Spring Break Fun during the last week of March. The offerings will include Lego time, candle making, making slime and a viewing of “Back to the Future.”

“This year, there’s a kids’ lineup of activities and a teen lineup, so every day there’s going to be something at 10 a.m. and something at 1 p.m.,” she said.

Attendee Casey Miller came to the event because her sister works at the school.

“I knew that there were going to be different businesses and organizations here and we were going to look around and speak with some of them,” Miller said. “I didn’t know Tenco had a greenhouse and that they grew all that. That’s really awesome!”

Jefferson County Public Health director Chris Estle and childcare nurse consultant Mandi Lauderman taught children how to check their heart rate. Kids were also treated to playing bag toss and a follow-the-leader balloon game.

“We’re teaching the kids how to check their heart rate and then they can learn how to figure out their minimum and their maximum. Then they know if they’re exercising at the appropriate rate,” said Lauderman.

Kim Eaton Proctor of the Maternal Health, Child and Adolescent Health and Women, Infants, and Children booth had a lot to say about the organization’s programs that roll up under American Home Finding Association of Ottumwa, which has been an adoption agency for more than 100 years.

“We are here in the state of Iowa to help kids with nutrition,” she said. “We check oral tissue and blood, and we do iron checks to make sure their iron levels are well. We give education to pregnant women and have a brand new breast-feeding peer counseling program that is increasing the number of moms that are exclusively breast-feeding and the length and duration that they’re going to be breast-feeding. We provide lots and lots of services.”

Green Iowa’s booth was staffed by Lacey Teal and Mary Brasch. Green Iowa is a part of Americorps, which engages more than 80,000 Americans in intensive volunteer service each year.

“We promote environmental education and sustainability. We offer a free community service of home energy auditing, which was previously offered by Alliant, but we are sponsored by Alliant to do it now,” Teal explained. “It’s a free program for everyone in the community.”

“We go into people’s homes and hook up a machine that measures the exchange of air to see how efficient or inefficient the home is. We also do light bulb replacements and faucet aerator replacements. We recently replaced a 25-gallon per minute showerhead with one that has a rate of 2.5 gallons,” she said.

Representatives of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources were on hand promoting two regional state parks, Lacey Keosauqua and Lake Darling outside Brighton. Student Carter Thompson was on hand to explain the booth’s biggest draw, about a half-dozen animal pelts.

“I was talking to them about the pelts. They have all different kinds. There’s raccoon, river otter, bobcat and coyote,” Carter explained.


Comments (3)
Posted by: Glen Joseph Peiffer | Mar 07, 2018 23:52
Posted by: Glen Joseph Peiffer | Mar 23, 2018 03:44
Posted by: Glen Joseph Peiffer | Mar 29, 2018 00:26
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