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Group of People Connection Digital Device Concept

Today, the Alabama Cooperative Extension System serves 1.4 million people or 1 in 3 Alabama residents.

From the Administrators 

Urban Admins

Dr. Kimberly Sinclair Holmes, Assistant Director;
Dr. Allen Malone, 1890 Extension Administrator;
Dr. Celvia Stovall, Associate Director

If there is one word to describe 2020, it would be RESILIENT. The COVID-19 pandemic touched the lives of every global citizen and for once, we were all on the same playing field. COVID-19 changed the way Cooperative Extension Systems delivered programs, allowing us to be innovative. Like other organizations across the nation, we were resilient in adapting operations and in-person programming to online platforms, such as Zoom, Panopto, Facebook, Nearpod. Of course, this meant that our clients had to move online as well to access programs via digital devices, such as mobile phones, tablets, and computers. 

While we are not yet out of the woods where COVID-19 is concerned, we learned that we could adapt and still meet the needs of Alabama citizens. COVID-19 forever changed the way we view life, and it forever changed the way we engage with our audiences. Nevertheless, we remained steadfast–resilient! We are proud of the work we accomplished in 2020, and we are grateful we could continue to serve the people of Alabama and around the world.

Major Impacts in 2020

Alabama Extension staff at Alabama A&M University rose to the challenge and delivered approximately 1,501 online sessions in nine Urban Centers and published over 100 informational articles, including information on how the public can effectively respond to COVID-19. 

Other impacts include:

  • Direct Face-to-Face Contacts: 40,305
  • Indirect Contacts: 127,938
  • Total Website Visits: 2,694,506 (Unique: 2,180,431)
  • Urban Extension Website Views: 65,492 (Unique: 53,930)
  • Facebook User Reach: 135,566
  • Total Annual Listeners for WJAB Monthly Radio Show: 11,050
  • Volunteer Hours: 513
  • Formal MOU Partnerships: 16

External Funding Comparison

  • FY 2018/19: $8.8 million
  • FY 2019/20: $10.1 million
  • FY 2020/21: $10 million

The Urban Difference Reports

Click on the following links to view reports from different program areas:

2020 References

In addition to specialist reports, the following references were used.

  • AARP. “Tech Usage Among Older Adults Skyrockets During Pandemic.” April 21, 2021. https://press.aarp.org/2021-4-21-Tech-Usage-Among-Older-Adults-Skyrockets-During-Pandemic
  • Brittne Kakulla. “Personal Tech and the Pandemic: Older Adults Are Upgrading for a Better Online Experience.” April 2021. https://www.aarp.org/research/topics/technology/info-2021/2021-technology-trends-older-americans.html-CMP=RDRCT-PRI-TECH-040721/?cmp=RDRCT-907b618d-20210416.
  • Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. The Toll of Tobacco in Alabama. Last updated May 18, 2021. https://www.tobaccofreekids.org/problem/toll-us/alabama.
  • Carlos Alberto Nogueira-de-Almeida, Luiz A. Del Ciampo, Ivan S. Ferraz, R.L. Del Ciampo, Andrea A. Contini, and Fábio da V. Uedc. “COVID-19 and obesity in childhood and adolescence: a clinical review.” https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7402231/pdf/main.pdf.
  • County Health Rankings and Roadmaps. 2021. “School fruit & vegetable gardens.” https://www.countyhealthrankings.org/take-action-to-improve-health/what-works-for-health/strategies/school-fruit-vegetable-gardens.
  • Hartman Group. “COVID-19’s Impact on Eating.” 2020. https://www.hartman-group.com/documents/888213358?r=929148420.
  • Juliana M. Horowitz, Anna Brown, and Rachel Minkin. A Year Into the Pandemic, Long-Term Financial Impact Weighs Heavily on Many Americans. March 5, 2021. https://www.pewresearch.org/social-trends/2021/03/05/a-year-into-the-pandemic-long-term-financial-impact-weighs-heavily-on-many-americans/.
  • Carolyn Jones. “Eating disorders among teens surging during the pandemic.” March 11, 2021. https://edsource.org/2021/eating-disorders-among-teens-surging-during-the-pandemic/650882.
  • Kaplan Early Learning Program. “Using Gardening to Promote STEM.” 2021. https://www.kaplanco.com/ii/gardening-to-promote-stem.
  • Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. 2021. “Teen smoking: How to help your teen quit.” https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/tween-and-teen-health/in-depth/teen-smoking/art-20046474.
  • UnitedHealth Group. “Improving Health Literacy Could Prevent Nearly 1 Million Hospital Visits and Save Over $25 Billion a Year.” October 2020. https://www.unitedhealthgroup.com/content/dam/UHG/PDF/About/Health-Literacy-Brief.pdf.
  • United Health Foundation. America’s Health Rankings. August 17, 2021. https://www.americashealthrankings.org/explore/health-of-women-and-children/measure/youth_tobacco/state/AL.
  • United States Department of Agriculture. Southern Region News Release Goat Inventory. January 29, 2021. https://www.nass.usda.gov/Statistics_by_State/Regional_Office/Southern/includes/Publications/Livestock_Releases/Goat_Inventory/Goats2021.pdf.
  • United States Department of Health and Human Services. Revised August 2, 2021. “Health Literacy in Healthy People 2030.” https://health.gov/our-work/healthy-people/healthy-people-2030/health-literacy-healthy-people-2030.
  • Vanessa Forti, Cornelis Peter Baldé, Ruediger Kuehr, & Garam Bel. 2020. “The Global E-waste Monitor 2020: Quantities, flows and the circular economy potential.” http://ewastemonitor.info/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/GEM_2020_def_dec_2020-1.pdf.
  • Whitetail Properties. May 1, 2018. “How Owning Goats Can Be Beneficial.” https://www.ranchandfarmproperties.com/blog/how-owning-goats-can-be-beneficial.

Thank You!

Special thanks to program partners, participants, Alabama Extension staff, and other valuable stakeholders who make our work possible.

Author & Editor, Wendi Williams, Communications & Marketing Coordinator, Alabama A&M University. Design/layout, Shannon Schoeneweiss, Technology Media Coordinator, Alabama A&M University.

New November 2021, The Urban Difference: Report 2020, UNP-2184


This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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