Madison County

Berea named one of 10 communities in pilot project to fight rural child poverty

The Obama administration on Friday named Berea as one of 10 communities in the United States to be the site of a national demonstration project to combat rural child poverty.

The work in Berea will be with Partners for Education at Berea College and will serve Knox County.

Named Rural IMPACT Demonstration sites, the communities will receive assistance from the federal government to address child poverty through services such as health and technology.

For example, said a White House news release, a rural family could get help in accessing a world-class specialist from their small-town clinic through telehealth.

The project is a collaboration between the U.S. Health and Human Services Department and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The White House said more than 6 million Americans in rural areas, including about 1.5 million children, live in poverty.

More than 300 rural counties have had poverty rates of more than 20 percent since 1980, the White House said.