Evanston residents in the whiter, wealthier north side neighborhoods can live up to 13 years longer 13 years longer than residents who live just south of Green Bay Road.

That’s just one finding from the 2022 Evanston Process for the Local Assessment of Needs (EPLAN) that Kristin Meyer, the city’s community health specialist, will present at the free health fair from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, April 29, at the main branch of the Evanston Public Library, 1703 Orrington Ave.

2022 Evanston Process for the Local Assessment of Needs (EPLAN)

The library and TBF Diagnostic, a clinic, are teaming up to shed light on disparities in health within communities of Black and Indigenous people and people of color while also directing attendees to more than 10 organizations’ local services and resources.

This is the library’s first health fair since before the pandemic, said Irene Williams, EPL’s health and wellness librarian.

“I wanted to cover a lot of different areas when it came to Black health,” said Williams.

Evanston’s Black and Latino populations tested positive for COVID at more than twice the rate of white and Asian residents, the RoundTable reported in 2021.

The library’s health events have focused on mental health, suicide prevention and homelessness, Williams said. To expand the range of topics, she reached out to Takala Fomond, founder of TBF.

The health fair will feature presentations from the Illinois Secretary of State’s office about organ donation, mental health services available at the Chicago-based PWP Health, plus Norwood Wellness will share alternative forms of therapy.

The library is one of the best locations to have a health fair, Fomond said.

“The library in general is a massive place for resources, so what better place than a safe space in a central location to share resources?” Fomond said.

Fomond was born and raised in Evanston. She grew up in the Fifth Ward and is passionate about making health care affordable.

TBF Diagnostic is a Black-owned clinic that offers diagnostic tests for sexually transmitted diseases, pregnancy, DNA, HIV, COVID and other conditions. TBF Diagnostic had its grand opening in March 2022. It joined The Aux, an incubator for Black businesses and a community hub, in February.

“I want to eliminate any excuse not to know your numbers,” Fomond said. “When you know better, you can do better. So know your status whether you’re diabetic, whether you’re at risk for kidney failure. We want to make sure that people have the ability to know what their status is.”

Gina Castro is a Racial Justice fellow for the RoundTable. She recently earned a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism where she studied investigative reporting....

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