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Ascension Wisconsin, driven by compassion and a dedication to provide personalized care for all, will be out in the community administering preventive health screenings, coaching and education at the Black Arts Festival MKE, Saturday, August 3rd.

“We’re going to be offering free dental care with our dental mobile unit. We will be offering oral hygiene services and cavity protection young people, we’re also going to be doing health screenings for blood pressure and diabetes and health and nutrition education,” said Reginald Newson, Chief Advocacy Officer, Ascension Wisconsin.

The 2nd annual Black Arts Festival MKE, held at Henry Maier Festival Park, celebrates the rich and thriving traditions of the African American community. The event-designed for all ages-delivers family entertainment and exhibitions of the rich African American heritage.

An expanded health component to the festival, “A Healthy You”, will focus primarily on health issues that affect the African American community at a higher rate such as diabetes and hypertension.

A recent County Health Rankings report, which is a collaboration of the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, finds Milwaukee County ranking 71st, or second to last, in both health outcomes and health factors. Health outcomes include measures such as premature deaths, and quality of life gauges like physical and mental health and low birth weights. Health factors include behaviors, clinical care, socioeconomic factors and physical environment factors.

“We had a health component last year, but this year is greatly expanded,” said Patrice Harris, Executive Director, Black Arts Festival MKE. “There’s a lack of knowledge that’s been discovered over the last five to ten years that people aren’t as aware of some of the issues that affect our community. It’s another way to educate people.”

The festival is from noon until midnight. Ticket sales at the gate will cease at 10:30pm. The Hunger Task Force is asking attendees to bring three (3) cans of peaches or pears in 100% natural juice to their tent across from the mid gate to receive FREE admission between noon – 2pm.

“We are grateful that Black Arts Festival MKE is doing “A Healthy You”. It’s important to us as a community partner and a responsible community organization. This is part of our mission to provide service to the community,” Newson said.

To learn more about how we are coming together to give healthcare a better name, please contact Brian McKaig at Brian.McKaig@ascension.org

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