Oak Cliff Health Festival raises awareness about diabetes
Five-time Grammy Award winner and Tejano recording artist Little Joe Hernandez and his band, La Familia, will perform live at Feria de Salud sponsored by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas Saturday Sept. 19 at Kidd Springs Park in Oak Cliff.
Little Joe was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes six years ago and has been touring the country in order to raise awareness about the disease, especially among Latinos.
“We are honored to bring Little Joe y La Familia to Dallas-Ft. Worth, not only to help raise awareness about diabetes prevention, but to let our community know that even with diabetes thousands of people, like Little Joe, can manage their condition and lead happy successful lives,” said Catherine Oliveros, director of community investments at Blue Cross and Blue Shield.
Research shows that one in two Latinos will develop diabetes in their lifetime, according to the American Diabetes Association.
Feria de Salud will be held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. with Little Joe y La Familia performing at noon and signing autographs after the performance.
More than 2,000 Dallas residents are expected to attend. The health fair is sponsored by Texas Health Resources and Novo Nordisk and features free health screenings including diabetes, cholesterol, vision, dental, foot and blood pressure.
“I am very excited about the event, and I think it’s a great event for the Oak Cliff community,” said Esteban Mojica, co-chair. “This is an event that brings unity and outreach all in one.” Over 500,000 North Texas residents have diabetes. Diabetes is a serious illness that disproportionately affects Latinos. One in seven Latinos has diabetes in comparison to one in 20 non-Latino whites.
Participants will be able to attend bilingual education workshops focused on diabetes prevention and management. “It’s important to know your risk for diabetes,” said Gina Perales Hethcock, communications director for the ADA North Texas. “Type 2 diabetes is preventable. But if you are diagnosed with diabetes, it’s critically important that you be able to manage it with healthy food and exercise.”
There will also be plenty of fun and prizes! The Feria de Salud’s entertainment will feature music by Latin House Krew. The kids’ zone, sponsored by YMCA and the City of Dallas, will feature a rock-climbing wall, bounce house and face painting. This year’s event will also include an FC Dallas appearance, sponsored by Novo Nordisk. The Latino Culinary Institute will be conducting a food demonstration and providing healthy snacks, while Famisalud will teach about which foods are good for you.
Health screenings will be offered by Walgreens, Dallas Diabetes and Endocrine Center, Baylor Heart and Vascular Center, Carter Blood Care, Prevent Blindness Texas, Parkland, and Women’s Specialty Center. Media sponsors are Univision Television and Radio.
For information about Feria de Salud, visit www.diabetes.org/feriadallas.
For information about diabetes, please call 1-888-DIABETES, or visit www.diabetes.org.