Every year, the Missouri State University (MSU) Care Clinic and Mercy come together to serve underprivileged individuals in the Springfield community. The two partner to provide comprehensive health care to those who are uninsured.
The Care Clinic serves as a lifeline for individuals whose income falls below 200% of the federal poverty line. They offer free primary care, lab services, medications and even a clothing bank and nonperishable food items.
Art that makes an impact
Recently, MSU and Mercy collaborated with renowned photographer Randy Bacon to create the Renewed Hope Exhibition, an inspiring collection of 12 powerful stories and portraits. These narratives highlight the transformative journey of patients who have found solace, care and a path toward stability through the clinic’s valuable services.
“The exhibition aimed to resonate with the broader community, shedding light on the impactful role of health care in individuals’ lives,” said Justin Gassel, MSU Care Clinic practice manager.
The exhibition’s culmination held in the O’Reilly Health and Science Center on Oct. 24 witnessed a celebration of these meaningful narratives. Patients, community partners and leadership from MSU and Mercy convened to appreciate the collective display of these stories.
It wasn’t just an exhibition; it was a moment of profound recognition for the patients who courageously shared their stories, creating a space for empathy, understanding and appreciation within the community.
Nurturing holistic well-being and community
Beyond addressing medical needs, the clinic embodies a holistic approach, acknowledging the socioeconomic challenges individuals face.
The stories display the profound impact of genuinely invested health care. By combining medical care with efforts to address basic needs like nutrition, shelter and overall well-being, the clinic fosters a path toward lasting change for its patients.
“The exhibition’s core mission is to dismantle preconceived notions about health care and share the transformative power of authentic care,” Gassel said.
As these stories resonate with readers and visitors, they encourage the community to support those in need.