Two Forsyth County initiatives have been recognized by The National Association of Counties (NACo) 2020 Achievement Awards for innovation in county government.
Emergency Medical Services’ Community Paramedics program won in the Health category. The program addresses the needs of those who’ve become dependent on Emergency Medical Services by addressing the issues that are causing them to frequently call 911. Community paramedics also divert patients from the emergency department when other services may be more appropriate to address their needs, such as behavioral health and substance use services.
“The community paramedicine program is a hidden gem inside of Forsyth County that serves the public at large,” said Emergency Services Director Tim Black. “It‘s only fitting that they would receive an award to champion their efforts.”
A collaboration between Moji Coffee + More and the Forsyth County Central Library won in the Human Services category. The nonprofit Moji Coffee provides good paying jobs with transferable skills for people with intellectual developmental disabilities. The nonprofit approached the county for start-up funds in 2019. When a space for a coffee shop opened up in the Central Library, the county offered it to Moji Coffee. The county used Behavioral Health funds to help support Moji opening up at the library to provide training and employment opportunities for those with intellectual developmental disabilities.
“Moji's mission so clearly dovetails with the public library's mission to lead in lifelong learning through community engagement, innovative programs, and inclusion,” said Associate Library Director Elizabeth Skinner. ”When a happy marriage of core service values and the opportunity to build social capital occurs, everyone in the community wins.”
Forsyth County libraries are currently closed to the public due to COVID-19, but are expected to reopen on June 29. The Central Library Moji Coffee location will open at a later date.