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Health fair helps families in need

A steady flow of participants visit various booths during a Health and Wellness Fair at Camarena Health on Thursday. (Wendy Alexander)


In preparation for National Health Center Week, the Camarena Health Center hosted its annual Community Wellness and Resource Fair, offering services for families, and fun activities for children.

The fair, held Thursday morning at the Camarena Center brought in families around Madera, for free screenings and examinations they may not otherwise have received. They also were provided with free food boxes and information on public services, nutrition, and safety.

According to Camarena’s director of communications development, Lizette Contreras, 44 community agencies were at the fair to inform and assist Madera families. The fair also included face painting, sponge relays, a chalk art contest, and bean-bag tossing among its activities for children.

Although National Health Center week doesn’t actually take place until the second week of August, Contreras said the health center had decided to start early with the health fair.

“We’re doing it as a kickoff because on the second week, the kids are already in school,” Contreras said.

Also attending the fair was City Councilman Donald E. Holley, who came to visit and show his support for the event in City Council District 6, which Holley represents.

“Lots of folks don’t go to the doctor, so this gives them a chance to come out, check their blood pressure, their sugar, and to intermingle with the community, to see what Madera has to offer at no cost at all. All the different agencies with the health department, they come down to support,” Holley said. “So we’ve got a lot of things out here, with insurance, to your medical doctors, just a lot of variety.”

“I got good advice, information, some free samples here and there,” said Sally Marquez, a mother of three, who came to the fair after hearing about it from a friend.

“I see a lot of the offerings for the kids, for children- I really like that a lot.”

Marquez, who is also a preschool teacher, she was so impressed with the fair that, she was not only interested in coming back next year, but in volunteering for it as well.


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