Health fair reveals signs of the times

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The Salvation Army and the city of Torrance team up to host a free health care clinic.

by Karen Gleason –

Dozens of healthcare providers and services filled the Torrance Corps for the annual Health and Resource Fair. [Photo by James Gamble]

Just think of the convenience of dealing with all your health needs in one location—from routine tests and questions for the doctor or pharmacist, to diabetic screening, to bone density testing, to massage, to foot analysis and skin analysis, to iridology and Chinese medicine.

For 17 years, the Torrance (Calif.) Corps—specifically its Adult Day Care Center—has provided this opportunity at its annual Health & Resource Fair—the largest event of its kind in the area—held each September. This year the city of Torrance increased its participation. Recognizing the quality of the Torrance Corps’ health fair, the city cancelled its own similar endeavor and combined their resources with those of The Salvation Army—making a great event even better.

Corps Officers Majors Julio and Karen Vasquez stayed busy throughout the event, which featured 38 resource tables in the corps’ multi-purpose room, including representatives from various health care organizations, Meals on Wheels, the Torrance Library, the U.S. Census, the Kiwanis Club and COSTCO—among others. Torrance Corps soldiers provided information about Salvation Army programs and worship services.
In other areas of the corps, doctors, pharmacists and other medical practitioners provided services. Outside, the Lions mobile unit offered hearing, vision and blood pressure screenings. Lunch was available and the oldies band S’Cool Daze entertained. Classic cars were on display in front of the chapel. There was something for everyone, including door prizes.
Vazquez said he observed a significant change this year. “Way more families with children—as opposed to just seniors—attended today. This is a sign of the times; it’s difficult for families to get the health care they need. I am glad we can provide this service.”

During the opening ceremony, Vazquez recognized local dignitaries: from the mayor’s office, Councilman Pat Furey, and from Assemblyman Ted Lieu’s office, Candace Allen. He thanked the city of Torrance and sponsors: Always Right Home Care, Brookdale Pacific Inn, Continuity Care Home Nurses, Harbor Terrace Retirement Community, the Law offices of Hofer and Harris, Julius Sumner Miller Foundation, Kiwanis Club of Torrance, Providence Little Company of Mary Hospital, and Torrance Memorial Hospital. Essential to the fair’s success were volunteers from Kiwanis Sponsored Youth, Circle K Club, Kiwins, Key Club and local high school students, and especially the members of the Adult Day Care Advisory Council.

Torrance CitiCABLE 3 covered the event, along with Channel 7 Eyewitness News.

One woman told Vazquez: “This is the best health fair anywhere…I took flyers to my church and I have seen many members of my congregation here.”

An elderly couple confided that this is where they get their yearly health screenings. “Even though we have insurance,” they said, “we feel better about coming here.” They trust The Salvation Army.

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