John Hayes Family Ministries, in collaboration with Hillsborough County Parks and Recreation and local medical professionals and providers, will host a Health and Wellness Fair from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the Brandon Community Center, 502 E Sadie St. The event is focused on the elderly, youth and homeless.
Medical professionals will provide education on healthy living for the elderly and Alzheimer's as well as testing for diabetes.
"We have so many different agencies in the county and people don't know it's there," said John Hayes, who is retired. "We want to reach out to the community and let them know you can get help, you don't have to suffer."
Because the wellness fair coincides with Armed Forces Day, Hayes said there will be a military salute, free barbecue chicken, raffles and live gospel music. Attendees are encouraged to bring a chair and enjoy the entertainment. A local senior club also plans to display its arts and crafts.
WellCare, a Tampa-based Medicare and Medicaid provider, is sponsoring the event, which will also include representatives from Amerigroup insurance and USF Health. In addition to health care professionals, the outreach fair also promises to include advocates in the legal and consumer protective services areas.
Although this is a first-time event for the area, Hayes has helped organize similar events since founding his John Hayes Family Ministries group in 1999 in Brandon. He spent three years ministering to groups of people under a tent in Tampa's university area.
Hayes expects more than 200 people to attend. To help, call Hayes at (813) 850-2173.
Times correspondent Eric Vician