JSU Unveils Civil Rights Mural, Substance Abuse Prevention Block Grant and USM Vaccine Incentive Program | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

JSU Unveils Civil Rights Mural, Substance Abuse Prevention Block Grant and USM Vaccine Incentive Program

Jackson State University’s Office of Community Engagement unveiled its new Council of Federated Organizations mural, titled “Chain Breakers,” on Saturday, July 24. Photo courtesy JSU

Jackson State University’s Office of Community Engagement unveiled its new Council of Federated Organizations mural, titled “Chain Breakers,” on Saturday, July 24. Photo courtesy JSU

Jackson State University’s Office of Community Engagement unveiled its new Council of Federated Organizations mural on Saturday, July 24. The mural, located on the outside of the COFO building at 1017 John R. Lynch St., is called “Chain Breakers” and pays homage to civil-rights legends both living and dead, a release from JSU says.

JSU commissioned Jackson artist Sabrina Howard for the mural project. Her previous work includes the Milton Chambliss Shoe Hospital mural in the 900 block of John R. Lynch Street and a mural titled “Sowing the Seeds of Love” at the JSU/Blackburn Learning Garden near the main campus of the university. The Mississippi Arts Commission gave JSU an $8,000 grant for the new COFO mural.

COFO, established in 1961, was a coalition of several major civil-rights groups in Mississippi that coordinated to register voters and conduct other civil-rights activities. The organization regularly partnered with other civil-right groups such as the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, the Congress of Racial Equality, the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.

JSU reopened the COFO building as COFO Civil Rights Education Center in 1971. The center aims to preserve the past, cultivate young minds and foster the development of future leaders and community builders, JSU's release says.

Guests at the mural unveiling included Jacqueline Hamer Flakes, the daughter of Fannie Lou Hamer; Jason Robinson, a grandson of Rose Elizabeth Howard Robinson; Louise Marshall, the first African American bookstore owner in the Washington Addition community; Regina Orey, a niece of Albert Powell who was the first African American florist in the Washington Addition; state Rep. Alyce G. Clarke of House District 69; and Angela Stewart, archivist for JSU’s Margaret Walker Center.

For more information, visit jsums.edu/cofo/.

MJCPC Receives Substance Abuse Prevention Block Grant Renewal

The Department of Mental Health Bureau of Alcohol and Drug Services recently renewed the Metro Jackson Community Prevention Coalition's Substance Abuse Prevention Block Grant. MJCPC will receive $304,488 for the 2021-2022 fiscal year.

MJCPC uses the Substance Abuse Prevention Block Grant to provide evidence-based substance-abuse prevention services to local schools and colleges in the Jackson community, a release from Jackson State University says. JSU staff member Henry C. Thompson Jr. is the director and principal investigator for MJCPC.

The grant program also focuses on preventing the abuse or misuse of prescription drugs, alcohol and marijuana in the Jackson metro area. The grant helps educators develop and implement age-appropriate and culturally relevant comprehensive prevention programs directed at individuals not identified to be in need of treatment. Other MJCPC services include prevention activities for elementary through secondary schools and sub-groups at high risk for substance abuse.

USM Launches Student Vaccine Incentive Program

The University of Southern Mississippi recently announced a new incentive program to encourage students to obtain their COVID-19 vaccination. Through the program, fully vaccinated USM students will be eligible for incentives over the course of the next 12 weeks. USM will host weekly drawings from Friday, July 30, through Friday, Oct. 15.

USM Staffers will draw five names of students who receive their vaccine each week and give out 60 incentives over the 12-week timeframe. The USM Dean of Students office will notify winning students.

Incentives include fall 2021 semester tuition valued at $4,602 each, USM dining dollars valued at $1,000 each, Barnes & Noble bookstore book vouchers valued at $300 each, housing and residence life room credit valued at $2,000 each and parking decals valued at $414 each.

To be eligible for the incentive program, students must be enrolled in classes at USM for the fall 2021 semester and submit a completed, official COVID-19 vaccination record online at usm.edu/gotmycovidvax.

USM students and employees can schedule a COVID-19 vaccination appointment at Moffitt Health Center on the USM Hattiesburg campus. Students and employees can schedule a vaccination appointment online or call Moffitt Health Center at 601-266-5390. Off-campus COVID-19 vaccination locations are available online at vaccines.gov.

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