The Sherrill Center at the University of North Carolina Asheville. Photo courtesy of UNC Asheville's website.

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From the University of North Carolina Asheville, shared Sept. 6:

The Sherrill Center at the University of North Carolina Asheville. Photo courtesy of UNC Asheville’s website.

A series of important health policy discussions will be part of “Well-a-Bration,” a week of activities Sept. 12-17 showcasing UNC Asheville’s health and wellness programs. These events, organized by UNC Asheville’s N.C. Center for Health and Wellness (NCCH&W) in collaboration with community partners, take place in the new Sherrill Center and are open to the public.

“Health is an individual challenge, but there is a lot more we can do as a society to smooth the path to wellness for every segment of our population and for each person,” said David Gardner, executive director of NCCH&W. “Well-a-Bration week and every week, we’ll be working on strategies to help all North Carolinians, and also ways to overcome health disparities.”

Well-a-Bration health policy highlights include:

Pioneering Healthier Communities Town Hall Meeting: Pioneering Healthier Communities is an initiative spearheaded by the YMCA, engaging organizations and individuals in strategies to integrate activity into everyday life and make Asheville a healthier place to live, work and play. The focus of this meeting will be on the built environment, including safer routes to school, “complete streets,” and greenway development. Refreshments will be served. Free and open to the public, 6:30-8 p.m. Mon., Sept. 12, Sherrill Center room 417.

The Culture of Medicine and Health Care Disparities, with Dr. Liz Castillo, medical director of Asheville Buncombe Institute of Parity Achievement (ABIPA): Dr. Castillo will outline some of the disparities in health challenges and outcomes, and access to care between different groups in our region. ABIPA is dedicated to improving health conditions for African Americans through education, health services and advocacy. Refreshments will be served. Free and open to the public, 6:30-8 p.m. Tues., Sept. 13, Sherrill Center room 417.

Eat Smart Move More North Carolina Leadership Team Meeting: This important initiative brings together partner organizations across North Carolina. Participants in the meeting include Dr. Jeffrey Engle, State Health Director; David Gardner, executive director, UNC Asheville’s N.C. Center for Health & Wellness; Keith Ray, associate professor and chair, UNC Asheville Department of Health and Wellness; others. Free and open to the public, 1-4 p.m. Fri., Sept. 16, Sherrill Center room 417.

Dr. Patch Adams: Best known for his work as a physician and clown, Dr. Adams is also a social activist who has devoted 40 years to changing America’s health care system. He is founder of the Gesundheit! Institute, a nonprofit project in holistic medical care based on the belief that one cannot separate the health of the individual from the health of the family, the community, the world, and the health care system itself. Dr. Adams believes that laughter, joy and creativity are an integral part of the healing process. Dr. Adams’ talk is free and open to the public, 2-3 p.m. Sat., Sept. 17, Sherrill Center room 417.

For the complete Well-a-Bration schedule, including health and sports expos, tours of the biofeedback and balance labs and campus gardens, cooking and exercise programs and more, visit unca.edu/wellabration.

Kathleen O'Nan

Kathleen O'Nan is a contributing reporter to Carolina Public Press.

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