PHILADELPHIA, Sept. 23, 2013 – More than 300 residents of Sen. Anthony Hardy Williams’ district filled the Mercy Eastwick Wellness Center on Sept. 19 to learn more about living a more full, satisfying and safer life during his “Navigating Life After 50+ Expo.”
“The event was very informative,” said Constance Johnson, a 77-year-old Center City resident who attended the event. “I loved the food and thought it was the best expo ever!”
The expo helped to guide Johnson and other attendees through the Affordable Care Act. It also provided free flu shots, taught line dancing, offered tips to avoiding elder abuse, and delivered important Social Security information and updates.
Williams said it was particularly important to talk to expo-goers about the Affordable Care Act, sometimes called Obamacare. With all the questions, controversies and myths that exist, the event served as an opportunity to provide facts and allay fears.
“We all need health insurance,” Williams (D-Philadelphia/Delaware) said. “The Affordable Care Act is very significant. For some residents in our communities, they have not had a choice, or even access to health care, for generations. And even if these attendees are covered, they can still serve as ambassadors and share legitimate information with their family and neighbors.”
The 8th Senate District is home to a growing population of older citizens, many of whom are facing an increasingly complex world and need guidance in navigating it, Williams said.
The U.S. Census is projecting that the citywide population of people who are 65 years and older will double by 2060.
“With people living longer, we must do all we can to help them navigate the complexities of finance and living wills, and to better understand how important it is to exercise, eat good and healthy food and take steps to be well,” Williams said.
Independence Blue Cross’s Independence Express Trailer supported the expo’s mission, educating some 170 visitors.
All attendees received a free lunch plus bags of produce that were filled with fresh vegetables and fruit.
Southwest Nu-Stop, Wells Fargo, Universal Companies, the Marcellus Shale Coalition, Mercy Eastwick Wellness Center, Pacifico Ford, Bravo Health, ShopRite, Ameri-health, and Charles Carter Insurance supported the event. Volunteers from Boys Latin Charter School also lent a hand, helping to serve lunch and pack the produce.
“The first three hours were extremely informative and enjoyable,” said Donna Samuel, associate director of the Executive Masters in Technology Management program. “My mind, body and spirit were well fed. The presenters were excellent and proved that even ‘seasoned’ folks don’t know everything.”