Event serves as one-stop shop for back-to-school necessities

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Back-to-school sometimes means starting off the year right, and for some, it could be getting a health check-up, paying off bills, or just having fun. The Samuel U. Rodgers Health Center accommodated all of those activities on Saturday with its annual school and health fair.

Some kids got to shake it ‘Gangnam Style’; others got glammed up with glitter and paint. All the while, the adults took care of some serious business, among them, Constance McGee.

“I'm without a job right now and I need my bills paid and I’m kind of far behind on them, and if they can help then I can get some assistance until i can get a job,” McGee said.

She had her utility bill in hand, while waiting to speak to representatives from the United Services Community Action Agency.

A spokesperson said if these families meet requirements, the agency will help pay off hundreds of dollars’ worth of debt from a utility bill or rent in the most dire situations, like McGee.

Right now, she says the lights are off at her home.

“This is a very serious crisis for me,” McGee said.

“People who are uninsured or underinsured. Some who just help pay with no insurance whatsoever,” Nina Howard, with the Samuel U. Rodgers Center, said.

The health center also provided free health screenings and free school supplies for the little ones. Help for that and they even helped with having fun.

“It makes me feel awesome to be able to help someone I always say if we are able to help one person. I've done my job today. But we'll probably help over a thousand people at some capacity,” Howard said.

“I get to get my blood pressure took and eyes checked and dental assistance when I don't have my Medicaid for it. So yeah, it's a good thing they have going here 57,” McGee said.

Organizers said they had about 40 vendors at the event today. Last year they said they had about 1,000 attendees.

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