Nearly 70 participants attended the first-ever Community Health and Wellness Fair on Wednesday November 14, co-sponsored by the AARP Chapter 4751 of the Southwest Waterfront and the District of Columbia’s Office on Aging, for all the residents and staff of the River Park Mutual Homes, a southwest co-op at 1301-1311 Delaware Avenue SW.
Participants visited the various exhibitors from the DC Office on Aging, the AARP’s Legal Counsel for the Elderly and Breast Health care, among others. Most importantly, residents of all ages participated in various health screenings, including the 18 who had flu shots courtesy of Walgreens, the 31 who benefited from vascular screenings from the Minimally Invasive Vascular Center and the 43 who received blood pressure and blood sugar screenings from DC’s Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department.
Yoga instructor Elsie Neely led participants in several chair yoga exercises. Alice A.Thompson, Community Outreach Specialist, DC Office on Aging, Aging and Disability Resource Center, welcomed all and explained the various services her department offers. Thelma Jones, a community breast care navigator for Smith Center foe Healing and the Arts, spoke about her work in advocating screening and breast cancer treatment for the region’s most vulnerable residents. Beryl Rice, a new member of the District of Columbia’s Senior Medicare Patrol, an AARP-sponsored program, explained her role in helping to protect seniors from Medicare errors, fraud and abuse.
AARP Chapter 4751 President Evelyn Dorsey and Program Chair Betty Jean Tolbert Jones continue to receive many compliments for teaming up with DC’s Office on Aging to bring comprehensive screenings and health information directly on-site to benefit the residents. Ms. Jones commented that plans are already underway with the Office on Aging to select a date for next year’s health fair and to expand the health services and exhibitors.
By Elaine F. Graves