Tipper Gore's visit to Augusta today is less about campaigning and more about finding a successful health care model.
Mrs. Gore, wife of Vice President Al Gore, who is running for president, will visit Beulah Grove Community Center at 10 a.m. with Georgia first lady Marie Barnes. They will be the hosts of a roundtable discussion with those involved in creating and maintaining the community clinic and community outreach there. The event is not open to the general public, but Mrs. Gore will try and greet people afterward outside, said Caroline Adelman, Georgia spokeswoman for Gore 2000.
Health care is an important issue to the Gores, Ms. Adelman said.
"My understanding is that she and the vice president have been looking toward these types of programs, and when she learned there was one in Augusta, she tried to get herself there," Ms. Adelman said. "When she finds a place where she can learn and she wants to talk with people about what's going on in their communities, that's where she likes to go."
It was a little surprising that word of the program had reached the ears of the Gores, but its success speaks for itself, said Gwen Durnell, executive director of the CSRA Partnership for Community Health. The partnership and the Beulah Grove Center founded a primary care clinic at the center, and there are a number of other programs, a food and clothing bank, and emergency financial assistance, Ms. Durnell said. The clinic is funded primarily by University Hospital.
"We hope she takes away (from the event) that this is a model for community development," Ms. Durnell said.
Reach Tom Corwin at (706) 823-3213.