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MN&WR: Patchwork Quilt

MN&WR: Patchwork Quilt

  • Contributor Beth Bingman shares the story of the first successful racially integrated summer camp in Appalachia -Fellowship House Day Camp in Knoxville, TN.
  • Eula Hall (healthcare activist and founder of the Mud Creek Clinic) shares the harrowing story of her mother’s brush with death during childbirth due to lack of medical care. –
  • Citizens in Prestonsburg, Kentucky speak out about their concerns over Governor Matt Bevin’s proposed changes to Medicaid.

In this episode of Mountain News & World Report we bring you a patchwork quilt of sorts.  No particular theme.  Just stories of people doing what it takes to make life as comfortable as possible given what they have.

In exploring what it means to have faith in our abilities to create something out of little to nothing, we discovered that this faith is the legacy of our mountain ancestors. Mountain people have been “making do” since time immemorial, not only to simply survive, but to thrive and find joy in the least obvious of places. For this episode, we begin in 1950s Knoxville, TN at the Fellowship House Summer-Day Camp, one of the first successful attempts at racially integrating activities for children. This effort was dreamed of by community members and brought to fruition by those same people. WMMT contributor Beth Bingman attended the camp as a child, and brings us this story.

For the second story of this episode, the late Eula Hall, tells the story of one of her mother’s many experiences with childbirth.  This time they almost lost her.  Eula went on to become an activist for the mountain people founding the Mud Creek Water District and the Mud Creek Clinic, and serving as the president of the Kentucky Black Lung Association.  In this segment she is sitting with author, Kiran Bhatraju, in WMMT studios in 2013.  Bhatraju wrote Eula’s biography Mud Creek Medicine: The Life of Eula Hall and the Fight for Appalachia.

In our final segment, we feature the voices of citizens speaking recent community forum held in Prestonsburg by Kentucky Voices for Health.  The forum gave an opportunity for citizens to speak out about Governor Matt Bevin’s proposed waiver asking for changes to Kentucky’s Medicaid program.  After similar public forums and an open comment period brought thousands of concerns to the governor’s office, Gov. Bevin revised the proposal.  The federal comment period for the revised proposal ended Saturday, October 8th.  Visit to learn more.   

appalachian history,
arts & culture,
mountain healthcare,

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