Mother & Child Health Coalition

Mother & Child Health Coalition
Press Release
Anne Biswell
(816) 283-6242 ext. 226
September 25, 2012
Joining Forces to Raise HIV/AIDS Awareness
BET’s “Rap It Up” Campaign comes to Kansas City
Kansas City, MO – Dr. Jean Craig, director of Kansas City Healthy Start, a program of Mother & Child Health
Coalition, was proud to join with Hope Academy Charter School in hosting BET’s (Black Entertainment
Television’s) “Rap-It-Up” event on Thursday, September 20. The program, held at the historic Gem Theater in the
18th & Vine District, helped to enlighten an enthusiastic group of students from Hope Academy on HIV/AIDS
awareness by use of a celebrity discussion panel. The panel included comedian Joe Clair, HIV/AIDS activist and
writer Denise Stokes, Rapper T’Juan, recording artist Sammie, BET’s “2009 Sunday Best” winner, Y’Anna Crawley,
Dr. Jeri Dyson, Dr. Chanda Graves and Samantha Hughes from the Kansas City Health Department. Panelists
shared their expertise on HIV/AIDS as well as their perspective and personal stories from their own lives. The
students had the opportunity to ask questions and express their concerns regarding HIV/AIDS, and then were
treated with a surprise performance by T’Juan.
BET has enlisted T’Juan’s services to travel with the BET Rap-It-Up team, spreading the message that the
HIV/AIDS epidemic needs to be “wrapped up.” T’Juan’s song about HIV, “I Wish I Could Save Every Girl,” has
touched the crowds and caused them to be more aware of the necessity to protect themselves against HIV and AIDS.
T’Juan has had the privilege of opening for Plies, T-Pain, Lil Wayne, Lil Boosie, Rick Ross, and Bow Wow. He has
also shared the stage with other dynamic lyricists such as G.R.I.T.S., and Da Truth.
Mother & Child Health Coalition believes that every child deserves a healthy start. MCHC promotes the health of
mothers and children through community planning, education, advocacy and collaboration with organizations
addressing infant mortality, immunization, childhood obesity, maternal health and child safety.
Kansas City Healthy Start is a bi-state, home visitation program that seeks to improve the health of pregnant women
and babies, and to decrease infant mortality and ethnic disparities in the Kansas City metro area. It offers outreach,
care coordination, depression screening, and health education.
Jean Craig, PhD, director, Kansas City Healthy Start (816) 283-6242 x 225 [email protected]
Susan McLoughlin, MSN, RN, CPNP, director, Mother & Child Health Coalition (816) 283-6242 x 253
[email protected]
Frieda Tresvan, MCHC director of education and health promotion (816) 283-6242 x 251 [email protected]
Interviews are available upon request.
Next 2 pages: photos
From left to right: Wil Dowdell, Zachary Bassin, Vonnelle Middleton, Denise Stokes, Dr. Jean Craig,
Dr. Chanda Graves, Y’Anna Crawley, Sammie, Dr. Jeri Dyson, Vikkie Johnson, Joe Clair, and Alvin Brooks.
Above: Hope Academy students listen as the BET’s Rap-it-Up panelists
share information about HIV-AIDS prevention.
Above: The historic Gem Theater in the 18th & Vine District was the site of BETs Rap-it-Up event for students of
Hope Academy on Thursday, September 20. The event was co-sponsored by Kansas City Healthy Start, a program
of Mother & Child Health Coalition.