Health Fair Aims To Change Kids’ Lives
MEMPHIS— Saturday, families in Whitehaven got a jump-start on the new school year. Immunizations, dental checkups and physicals were offered at a health fair sponsored by City Councilman Harold Collins and community activist, Hazel Moore.
The Whitehaven Community Health Fair wasn`t just to help families make sure their kids were fit for the first school bell. Organizers say the program`s mission is to make sure they stay healthy throughout their lives.
“We need to start saving them at an early age. If we wait until the time they are out of school, it’s almost too late,” said organizer Hazel Moore.
Which is especially important in a city like Memphis, that tops unhealthy lists year after year.
“I don`t like when people put down our community. I want it to be better,” said 11-year-old Justin Martin.
He spent Saturday morning packing up fruit as a volunteer for the health fair. It`s a task he takes personal.
” I see my mom and other family members have health problems such as high blood pressure and diabetes. I don`t want to be like that,” said Martin.
Mom Raija Jeffrey doesn`t want her children to have problems either.
“If they aren`t healthy, they won`t be productive in life. So I have to have healthy babies,” said Jeffrey.
A few months ago, doctors alerted her, her 9-year-old daughter Ealise was pre-diabetic.
” I was overwhelmed. It’s so much to deal with, but we`re going to tackle it,” expressed Jeffrey who says the family has changed their lifestyle. “I have changed the way I prepare things. The way we eat, things we cook. We exercise more, we weren`t exercising at first.”
Justin boasts staying active. The seventh grader also encourages his friends to do the same. It’s that pass it on spirit, organizers hope will spread and lead to a healthier city.