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Health Fair Closes Out Minority Health Month
As the month of April comes to an end, it's perfect timing to make sure you have a clean bill of health.
Springfield Community Federation, combined with the Springfield Urban League and Illinois Department of Health, worked together to put on an event that stresses this year's theme for National Minority Health Month: Prevention is power.
Julius Simmons Jr., Executive Director for Springfield Community Federation, says there are several diseases that affect minorities in particular: illnesses like diabetes, blood pressure, and HIV.
In an effort to combat those climbing statistics, Springfield Community Federation holds a health fair on Brandon Drive every year.
"This location is wonderful because we have several people just within walking distance, right outside of our door and at Brandon Drive, there are several families that can benefit," said Simmons.
Historically, building healthy habits is their mission for the month of April.
"We've had several activities this month encouraging people to be healthy, have healthy lifestyles, and healthy activities. So we're finishing out the month as a reminder with this health fair," said Simmons.
Organizers handed out information on healthcare, and the Wellness on Wheels Vehicle was there offering free HIV and hepatitis-C tests.
"Everyone should know. There's a lot of people out there who don't know that need to know, so get it while you can," said Lloyd Colvin, a Springfield resident who attended the health fair.
For those who were nervous to take the jump, Colvin says, "the only way to beat your fear is face your fear. So jump on it!"
While the weather did keep attendance down some this year, organizers still say the message was delivered.
"The ones that come here will sometimes take information and share it with family members or friends," said Simmons.
Sunday's HIV tests were free to all who attended the health fair, but if you missed it, there are over the counter tests at any drug store. They cost about $40, or you can give Urban League a call and they can set you up with more information.
Click here for more information on health services provided by the Springfield Urban League.