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Friday Facts: Government Information You Can Use

This Week's Facts:

-Help Raise Awareness of Minority Health Issues in April

-Make a Note to Appreciate Jazz this Month

-New VA App Connects Caregivers and Homeless

Uncle Sam Yourself

Keep watching the Census Bureau’s website for updates since the 1940 Census records release. A new application, Uncle Sam Yourself, is a fun way to place yourself in history. Upload a photo of yourself or someone you know and use the online tools to position your photo in the original poster. Click “SAVE” to save your image and/or share it via Facebook, Twitter, or your own website. Tell your friends – I want YOU to be Uncle Sam!

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Friday Facts Editorial Team:

Katharine Springer
State Data Center Coordinator

Elisabeth Hedges
Federal Documents Librarian
&

Kim Brown-Harden
State Documents Coordinator

Indiana Federal Depository Library Program

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Help Raise Awareness of Minority Health Issues in April

National Minority Health MonthAccording to the annual Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality National Health Disparities Report (NHDR), racial and ethnic minorities often receive poorer quality of healthcare than do non-Hispanic white patients, whether it be preventive care, disease management, or acute treatments. In order to remedy these disparities, April is National Minority Health Month. This year’s theme is Health Equity Cant’ Wait. Act Now in Your CommUNITY! Organizers at the Department of Health & Human Services and CDC encourage citizens to get involved at the local and state government level to help increase awareness of these disparities so that we can work to reduce them.

There are many events going on throughout Indiana to increase health education – you can attend meetings on tobacco, get your blood pressure checked, attend the 2012 Statewide Sickle Cell Conference, and more. For a complete list of Indiana activities, be sure to check out the Minority Health Month Calendar of Events in Indiana. For more Indiana resources, you can visit the Office of Minority Health website.

Make a Note to Appreciate Jazz this Month 

April is Jazz Appreciation MonthJazz is distinctly an American art form with roots in African American history and culture. For almost a decade, the U.S. has celebrated this art form with Jazz Appreciation Month in April.

The  Federal Resources for Educational Excellence (FREE) provides a guide to nine different Jazz teaching and learning resources from several federal agencies, in such as the Library of Congress: Photographs from the Golden Age of Jazz, National Endowment for the Humanities: Jazz in the Schools, and the U.S. Department of Education: Dr. Billy Taylor, A Conversation on Jazz. Additionally, the National Park Service has mapped out historical Jazz neighborhoods in New Orleans, LA.

Last year’s Smithsonian National Museum of American History blog featured Jazz Appreciation Month’s decennial celebration with David Baker and the original School of Jazz. Dr. David N. Baker is Chairman of the Jazz Department at Indiana University’s School of Music and Conductor and Artistic Director of the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra (SJMO).

Last week, the U.S. Department of State’s blog, DipNote, featured a current photo of Wynton Marsalis performing with a post on Jazz and the State Department: A Night on the Rhythm Road and the U.S. Embassy to Chile featured the State Department announcement, America Savors Its Music During Jazz Appreciation Month.

Don’t forget to use INSPIRE to discover more about Jazz artists and Jazz history. Find new ways to research by using the Advanced Search features and by selecting specific resources.

New VA App Connects Caregivers and Homeless

Veterans Administration: Project ReachDo you have any technology-minded patrons with a passion for helping the homeless in the United States? The VA Innovation Initiative is sponsoring a challenge to develop a mobile app that will connect those in need to local resources. Called “Real-time Electronic Access for Caregivers and the Homeless” (REACH), this app will be something that concerned citizens, volunteers, and outreach workers can use to instantly find out the location and availability of shelters, free clinics, and more. They can then relate this information to the people they are trying to help. The VA estimates that there were 636,017 homeless in the country last year; 67,495 were veterans. Families make up 37% of all homeless; this means that there are a lot of children in the United States without a place to live. The submission period for the challenge started on March 22nd and goes until July 27th. Submissions will be judged until August 23rd and they will announce the winners on November 9th. For more information on the contest, including rules and prizes, be sure to check out the website.

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