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Women’s Wellness complete another successful event

By Lailani Upham

Nearly 2,000 participants flowed through to check out stations set up to help women in all facets of health and life. (Lailani Upham photo) Nearly 2,000 participants flowed through to check out stations set up to help women in all facets of health and life. (Lailani Upham photo)

PABLO — The fifth annual Women 4 Wellness one-day event brought in more women and men last Thursday at the Joe McDonald Health Center at Salish Kootenai College than last year.

The event grows each years says to Alana Bahe, SKC Center for Prevention staff.

The purpose of the event is to focus on health education and disease prevention by offering free screenings from sponsors as well.

UM ImProving Health Among Rural Montanan’s offered bone density testing. The team of medical students included screenings and counseling on cholesterol, blood pressure, and diabetes as well. (Lailani Upham photo) UM ImProving Health Among Rural Montanan’s offered bone density testing. The team of medical students included screenings and counseling on cholesterol, blood pressure, and diabetes as well. (Lailani Upham photo)

The hope of the event is to increase healthy behaviors among women (and men) across the Flathead Reservation and Lake County.

Nearly 2,000 folks took in the free health screenings and information that was set up from wall to wall.

According to Bahe, approximately 1,500 bags were filled and distributed to participants. “Even after the bags were given out people kept registering,” she said.

An energy savings booth gives information and suggestions on lighting and heating to participants. (Lailani Upham photo) An energy savings booth gives information and suggestions on lighting and heating to participants. (Lailani Upham photo)

The event has been gaining momentum in the community with more and more women and even men jumping on board to check their health and gain information at the hundreds of booths displayed from the top level to the bottom.

Several stations as always featured tons of free information and screenings from major to minor.

This year the SKC Prevention Task Force who heads up the coordination of the community event took an aggressive step in fund raising to help keep the “fun day” going on for the coming years, says Bahe.

Mrs. Northwestern Montana Alyssa Schock of St. Ignatius has her blood pressure checked at the SKC Nursing station. Schock’s sister, Jaci Agustin was been crowned Mrs. Hawaii for 2013. Both sisters will be shooting for the national crown this year, says Schock. (Lailani Upham photo) Mrs. Northwestern Montana Alyssa Schock of St. Ignatius has her blood pressure checked at the SKC Nursing station. Schock’s sister, Jaci Agustin was been crowned Mrs. Hawaii for 2013. Both sisters will be shooting for the national crown this year, says Schock. (Lailani Upham photo)

The team held a “Ladies Night Comedy Night at the KwaTaqNuk” the week prior to raise money for next year.

The event was launched by a major grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women’s Health over five years ago.

Although many large local sponsors have helped the success of the event, it’s not going to be enough to keep it going if funding is lost from the Women’s Health grant, says Bahe.

The Breastfeeding Coalition of the Mission Valley demonstrates the importance of choosing breastfeeding for healthier lives through attention-grabbing dolls. (Lailani Upham photo) The Breastfeeding Coalition of the Mission Valley demonstrates the importance of choosing breastfeeding for healthier lives through attention-grabbing dolls. (Lailani Upham photo)

Major local funders include: SKC Center for Prevention and Wellness, Community Medical Center, AARP, KwaTaqNuk Resort and Casino, 8KPAX, Super1 Foods, Harvest Foods, S and K Technologies Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes, Walmart, St. Luke Community Healthcare, Susan G. Komen for the Cure Montana, Access Montana, Dr. Newton Coutinho Interventional Cardiovascular Disease, Providence St. Joseph Medical Center, Valley Banks, S and K Electronics, Anderson Radio and Broadcasting, alpha graphics, and Kalispell Regional Medical Center and Town Pump.

Sponsors and the SKC Prevention Task Force are working hard and remaining positive to keep the event alive.

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