2014 Northeast American Diocese Community Health Fair
A community Health Fair, organized under the auspices of the Northeast American Diocese of the Malankara Orthodox Church and co-sponsored by the Indian American Cultural Center (The Kerala Center), was held on June 21, 2014 at 1824 Fairfax Street, Elmont, New York 11003. The event was hosted by the Queens, Brooklyn and Long Island region of Marth Mariam Samjam. The organizers worked hard for the success of the event, making Fliers in English and Spanish and distributing them at the local stores and other public places in addition to advertising in the local media.
The Fair was inaugurated by Rev. Fr. TA Thomas, Vice-President of the Martha Mariam Samajam. V. Rev Addai Cor Episcopa and Rev. Fr. Paulose T. Peter, Mr. Thambi Thalappallil, President of the Kerala Center and Mr. Varghese Pothanikad, Diocesan council member, honored the occasion with their presence. It was very well attended by members of several Orthodox parishes and people from local population. As detailed below, several special tables with representation from many different organizations were set up to cater to the health needs of the participants.
- American Diabetes Association: Representatives of ADA gave demonstrations on the proper usage of the glucometer and other diabetes supplies. Roche Company distributed free Acu Check glucometers to participants.
- Allergy and Asthma screening: Pulmonologist Dr. Lizzy George had lung functions screened for many people.
- Dentistry: Dr. Reny Gupte provided visitors with information on different dental procedures. Free kits were also distributed.
- Podiatry: A popular spot where Dr. Smitha Abraham and her residents had visitors’ feet examined, imparting important information about proper care and exercises.
- Nutrition: Visitors to this table were given information by Mrs. Benzy Jacob on proper nutrition with special emphasis on health and wellness.
- Blood pressure and BMI screening: Mrs. Suja John, Mrs. Thankamma Rajan and Mrs. Annamma Abraham helped visitors at their table to have their blood pressure and BMI screened.
- New York Organ Donor Network: In addition to giving out information on organ donation, proper forms were distributed to make it easier for participants to sign up. It was very encouraging to note that many people signed up as donors.
- Health First: Representatives of this company provided a wealth of Information on securing health insurance.
- Mobile Mammogram Unit: Free Mammogram services were given to many participants.
There were two presentations. The first one was by Ms. Ellen Driscoll from ADA who gave useful tips on preventing the onslaught of diabetes or managing it with good nutritional diet and regular exercises. The second one was by Mrs. Mary Philip, Nurse Educator at Brookdale hospital, who gave valuable lessons and demonstrations on how to perform CPR on adults and children in emergency situations. Each presentation was followed by question and answer sessions followed by lively discussions.
On the whole, it was a very well organized program and many participants including those from local population were highly benefitted from the different services rendered. I thank all those who worked, up front or behind the scenes, for the success of the program. Our special gratitude is due to those from different organizations, Health Centers and Medical Disciplines who volunteered their time and effort and also for being physically present at the Fair to help us out. Above all, we sincerely thank Mr. Thambi Thalappillil, President of The Kerala Center and its Board of Trustees, for co-sponsoring this strictly community-based charitable event and for providing us with the venue and the freedom to use their facilities with no financial implications.
Marth Mariam Samajam
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