(Drew Saunders, April 24, 2018
Holly’s third annual Health and Wellness Festival packed the cafeteria of the Karl Richter Community Center, on the afternoon of April 21. Saturday’s information drive is the third annual effort by the Holly Area Community Coalition, a local substance abuse prevention non-profit, to bring information about the variety of health and wellness options available to Holly residents.
The fifteen booths arranged like an oval bullseye around the cafeteria represented every part of healthcare. Everything from local organizations like Alternative Elderly Care, to fire fighters and students from Michigan State’s College of Osteopathic Medicine. About half a dozen Spartans medical students were taking the opportunity to learn the real world applications of what they learned in the classroom.
“This is a volunteer opportunity that we all like to engage in, to go into the community and educate members of the community about healthcare. And then we also check blood pressure, BMI, cholesterol, [and] blood sugar. Just to give people an idea of what their baseline health is, so we can help them manage it on their own,” student Sravya Motheramgari said.
“This is primarily for the under-served population. Usually we have funding by a corporation, but sometimes we use funds from fundraising,” added Spartans student Rene Hannah.
Hannah said that Michigan State was sponsoring their trip to Holly this time.
“What brought us to have Michigan State here is that we don’t have any [medical] doctors in our community. Everyone has to go outside of the community for doctors. So, it’s great that they could come and offer these free health checks for people,” Holly Area Community Coalition Project Director Susan Papple told the Oakland County Times.
Aimee Mayes represented one of the community service organizations at the Festival. The Oakland Livingston Human Service Agency is a national “community action agency”, with a new branch in Holly, that helps struggling families. Mayes was in Holly to showcase their Woman Infants and Children program, WIC, which helps low income expecting mothers and their children.
“We give them access to healthy food and also referral services, as well as children under the age of five. If you [low income mothers] have an infant we’ll provide infant formula, as well as fresh fruits, vegetables and all the essentials,” Mayes said.
Bonnie Kelley runs Alternative Elderly Care. This local 24 hour service helps senior citizens with light housework, bathing, dressing and “respite care” for senior citizens. “We consider ourselves a little higher in quality and the price a little more comparable to those around us,” Kelley said.
Kelley said her operations consistency was key in the care the Davison-based service provides. Kelley said that the difference was that the same case worker works with the same client every single time, making it less likely that their clients would get frustrated or confused.
Papple was pleased with the turnout Saturday. She said the only fields they didn’t have represented was a chiropractor and a physical therapist.
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