On August 10, 2017 Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner hosted the sixth annual Back To School Fest (BTSF) at the George R. Brown Convention Center. Students from fifteen school districts and 10 zip codes were represented at the Back 2 School Fest. Families were connected to a wide range of health and social services offered by community agencies year-round. Parents and their children had the opportunity to interact with exhibitors such as Catholic Charities, METRO, Neighborhood Centers Inc., Crime Stoppers, Harris County Social Services, the Boy and Girl Scouts of America, Harris County Dispute Resolution Center, Bee Busy Wellness Center, Lemonade Day, Lone Star Legal Aid, and the United Way. The University of Houston showcased 10 of its programs along with 11 departments and 12 divisions of the City of Houston Health Department. Close to 8,000 backpacks were distributed at this year's event held at the George R. Brown Convention Center. This was the sixth annual BTSF with the fifth year that UH was involved, the past four years have been held at UH Athletic Alumni Center.
Event highlights :
- 89 University of Houston faculty, staff and students volunteered at the BTSF ranging from greeters, registration, floaters, backpack distribution etc. These volunteers are in addition to the close to 75 of pharmacy and optometry students who volunteer in their respective screening areas.
- UH College of Optometry and the City’s Health Department administered vision screenings to 753 children. Of those screened, 81 qualified to receive vouchers to see a physician and obtain glasses free of charge.
- The University of Houston’s College of Pharmacy rendered 856 clinical services, ranging from blood pressure and glucose screenings to BMI screenings.
- Students from the UH College of Pharmacy assisted in providing 2,801 children immunizations in preparation for back to school.
- UH Pharmacy students also visited with well over 3,000 children and adults providing basic education on diabetes, Body Mass Index, smoking cessation, prescription drug safety, and immunizations.
- For the first time this year, we had the UH HEALTH Research Institute attend BTSF and they conducted over 100 Carbon Monoxide Screenings and provided in-depth education on impact of second hand smoke and provided tips and tools to quit smoking
- Below is a list of the 10 UH departments that showcased their services in the “UH Zone” of the event.
- UH Charter School, UH Cognitive Development Lab, UH Writing Center, University Speech, Language, Hearing Clinic, UH ROTC, UH Texas Obesity Research Clinic, UH Admissions, UH Athletics, UH Pharmacy Students & UH University Eye Institute