Dozens of families attended the local League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) fourth annual Health Fair on Sept. 17 in the Hollister Recreation building parking lot.
More than 20 booths filled the lot and offered attendees information and services including blood pressure, eyesight and hearing screenings. Among the organizations present at the health fair were the San Benito Health Foundation, St. Louise Regional Hospital and San Benito Medical Associates.
“The idea is to bring all the services of the community to the people,” LULAC Health Fair Committee Chair Dr. Nazhat Parveen Sharma said.
The community doesn’t know what services are available, Sharma continued. She said it is especially important to educate parents on what is available in order for them to stop being afraid to ask for help.
The fair offered family entertainment with Folklorico Mexico en La Piel, a youth Mexican folklore group who performed various dances. Black Panther, Spiderman and Wonder Woman walked the fair and took pictures with fans.
According to Sharma, this year’s health fair had the largest attendance in what has been exponential growth over the last four years.
“The first fair we had very little money because we asked the doctors to help us,” Sharma said. “And the doctors are the main group that is helping us with this. Every year they have given us $2,000 to support this event.”
The Lions Club was also in attendance, offering free vision screening, blood pressure and hearing tests in their trailer.
“It’s letting the community know about what the Hollister Lions is all about,” said Karen Barela, a Lions Club member. “It’s about eye care. Free glasses and exams if they need them. If they don’t have any medical insurance we’ll do scholarships to get them eye care and hearing aid.”
The Hollister Lions Club is an organization of about 20 people who reach out to the community about its services, Barela said. Last year the Lions provided scholarships to local students and gave six scholarships to San Benito High School students, Barela said.
The Hollister Lions are also involved in highway cleanup and have donated mobile basketball hoops and backpacks filled with schools supplies to all residents at Chamberlain’s Children Center, Barela said.
Cheryl Hubner, a member of the San Martin Lions Club, said schools also reach out to the organization for donations. Recently, she said, the Sobrato High School art department asked for help to cover the cost of art supplies.
Hazel Hawkins Memorial Hospital was also present at the fair and offered glucose and blood pressure screenings, marketing director Frankie Gallagher said. Two registered nurses and a medical assistant provided the tests.
“It’s a great event,” Gallagher said. “It’s a nice community resource fair.”