BOWLING GREEN - Those over 50 are the fastest-growing age group of HIV-positive adults, and Nancy Orel feels a lack of information geared toward them is part of the reason.
Ms. Orel, director of the gerontology program at Bowling Green State University, is teaming up with two colleagues and Danielle Brogley, director of programs at the Wood County Senior Center, to develop a brochure about HIV/AIDS that will focus on issues related to older adults.
"The idea is to develop a brochure that ideally will be disseminated nationally," she said.
The out-of-the-ordinary project is one of 12 ideas that were selected to receive grants of up to $5,000 through BGSU's Partnerships for Community Action and the Center for Innovative and Transformative Education.
This marks the 10th year the university has provided grants to promote campus and community partnerships - an idea that BGSU President Sidney Ribeau proposed shortly after he arrived in Bowling Green.
Mr. Ribeau said he hoped the program would be long-lasting when he suggested it in 1997, but he never expected it to grow and have the impact it's had.
"It's one of those things you look back on your career and say this actually worked," he said.
Patrick Vrooman, interim assistant director for Partnerships for Community Action, said BGSU has given $410,000 over the last 10 years for projects that have leveraged more than $1 million in additional grants and in-kind donations of time and resources.
Many of the projects have grown after getting seed money from BGSU or simply lived on after getting their initial financial boost.
Gary Keller, principal at Kenwood Elementary School in Bowling Green, can attest to that.
His school landed a $4,000 grant four years ago enabling it to buy hand-held global positioning devices for fourth-graders. GPS instruction remains a part of the fourth-grade curriculum, he said, and students take the devices on field trips and even family vacations to plot their travels on a map.
"This is a great help with map studies," he said.
In addition to a $2,500 grant for the "Sexuality, medication, and HIV/AIDS and the older adult" project, others funded for 2007 were:
•"Cultural exchange through arts education program" involving BGSU students and disadvantaged, artistic youths in the Toledo area, $5,000.
•"Early literacy partnership" involving BGSU Firelands faculty and students and Norwalk Catholic schools staff and parents, $5,000.
•"Eastwood High School math peer-tutoring initiative," $4,000.
•"Education to reduce risky behaviors in youth" aimed at middle school students, $4,200.
•"For HER (Honesty, Equality, and Respect)" focusing on dating-violence awareness for high-school-age students in northwest Ohio public schools, $2,800.
•"Foundations on ice" involving the BGSU Ice Arena and DeVeaux Junior High students in Toledo, $3,000.
•"Healthy lifestyles project" to promote health goals for people with serious mental illness, $4,900.
•"La Petite Ecole," a collaboration of French House residents and elementary and junior high students, $1,400.
•"Summer program for enhancing language and literacy" for at-risk first graders, $3,700.
•"Transgender education and media project" to establish a speakers bureau and produce an educational video about transgender people, $3,500.
•"Wood County Health Department-BGSU partnership to address community concerns about factory farms," which will use BGSU students, faculty, and staff to monitor surface water quality near new factory farms in Wood County, $5,000.