Wellness Fair Returns to Little Village Neighborhood for Third Consecutive Year
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 3, 2014 | Chicago, IL
Erie Neighborhood House aims to support community wellness through resources, health screenings, and family activities during innovative block party
Chicago, Illinois—Erie Neighborhood House will host its third annual community wellness fair—My Wellness, Our Community—in Chicago’s Little Village neighborhood from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Friday, June 20, at the 4200 block of 25th St. Free and open to the public, the fair will operate this year in block-party fashion, feature more than thirty vendors and offering attendees access to health screenings, wellness resources, educational workshops, and a variety of activities geared toward the whole family.
“We’re trying to increase our outreach to families in the community,” explains Sandy De León, Site Director for Erie Neighborhood House – Little Village. The fair was held indoors the past two years, but De León is excited about the opportunities an outdoor venue presents. “Hosting the fair on 25th St. will increase our visibility, give us the capacity to invite more vendors, and allow us to offer multiple workshops and activities simultaneously.” She also believes the setting will offer a more welcoming, inviting atmosphere to members of the community who are less familiar with the programs and services offered at the agency’s Little Village location. “It should definitely help with attendance.”
The idea of hosting a fair emerged three years ago out of Erie House’s increasing emphasis on supporting health and wellness for its constituent families. The social service agency already offered several health-related programs at its location in Little Village, but the fair represented an opportunity to get out into the streets, so to speak, and connect with members of the community. De León is proud of her agency’s all-encompassing view of health and wellness. “Wellness is more than just physical health. Our programs and services offer a holistic approach around violence prevention, around healthy eating, around exercise, around domestic violence, around cultural identity.”
“Our hope is to continue prioritizing the health and wellness of the families we work with on a daily basis,” says Celena Roldan-Moreno, Executive Director at Erie Neighborhood House. “Providing education and access to services that encourage physical and emotional health can serve as a building block for many of the other program objectives we have at Erie House. It’s difficult to talk about success in school if children aren’t maintaining a healthy diet or don’t feel safe at home, just as it’s hard to envision the advancement of women in our community if they lack the self-esteem necessary to secure employment or further their education.”
De León’s hope is to attract 200 people to this year’s event, which is sponsored in part by Chicago Housing Authority, the Department of Child and Family Services, the city’s Healthy Chicago initiative, and the Violence Prevention Collaborative (VPC). The fair is also part of VPC’s broader Healing the Hood series, a collection of a dozen events distributed throughout the Pilsen and Little Village communities this summer.
The fair will feature numerous community organizations, including Erie Family Health Center, the Greater Chicago Food Depository, Sinai Urban Health Institute, Mujeres Latinas en Acción, Metropolitan Tenants Organization, Chicago Women’s Health Center and PAWS Chicago. For a current listing of vendors and for more information about the fair, please visit www.eriehouse.org/wellnessfair or call (773) 542-7617.