Hank’s Mini Market Health Fair- A Good Day in the Neighborhood
I was greeted with by a rare phenomenon on Saturday, July 22. No sky July (think May gray/ June gloom). Luckily the sun made an appearance to brighten up the day for the inaugural Hank’s Health Fair. Hank’s Mini Market, the mart with a mighty heart. Hank’s Mini Market is family-owned curated market serving South Central LA since 1997. Art + Food = inspiring and uplifting our community.
By Ricky Richardson | Contributing Writer
(Los Angeles, CA) I was greeted with by a rare phenomenon on Saturday, July 22. No sky July (think May gray/ June gloom). Luckily the sun made an appearance to brighten up the day for the inaugural Hank’s Health Fair. Hank’s Mini Market, the mart with a mighty heart. Hank’s Mini Market is family-owned curated market serving South Central LA since 1997. Art + Food = inspiring and uplifting our community.
Hank’s Health Fair was held in partnership with the Social Justice Learning Institute in Inglewood and UCLA Health. You heard the phrase “it takes a village.” Hank’s Mini Market staff, volunteers, partners and community organizations presented a fun-filled day for the entire family and community to present resources, tools and options for healthy living.
Strong Together! Is this year’s theme. Everyone was on the same page and in agreement that cohesion within one’s family and community can result in positive changes, transformations, for all involved. The health fair shined the spotlight on Hank’s Mini Mark and organizations (people on the front line), making a lasting impact on the community.
Kelli Jackson, owner, Hank’s Mini Market and her team, and partners has created the Health Fair for the community that everyone is hoping will become an annual event.
Hank’s Mini Market has been in the community for a long time. This month marks five years since Kelli Jackson and her team transformed the mart into a vibrant, cultural and created space, offering more healthy food options for the community.
The changes were well received by the community, as evident by the diverse customer base that frequent the mart from across the greater Los Angeles region.
Festivities got underway with DJ Tiger on deck of the ones and twos. DJ Tiger played selections that kept the crowd grooving and moving throughout the afternoon. Actress and producer Dariany Santana served as Mistress of Ceremony.
The first activity of the day consisted of an energetic workout of Trap Zumba with Nicole Steele. Next up was the Food Panel moderated by Dariany Santana with Kelli Jackson, Owner, Hank’s Mini Market; Nicole Steel, Social Justice Learning Institute; Mikel Whittier, Director, Office of Health, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, UCLA Health; and Na’eem Outler, Chief Executive Officer-Vurger Guyz. This was an informative panel sharing insight about wellness for the mind, body and soul.
Author Nicole Russell read her latest children’s book entitled “My Busy, Busy Brain: The ABCD’s of ADHP. Carter Steele, a local youth, did an excellent job introducing Nicole Russell to the stage. Carter Steele was calm and poise as she interviews Nicole Russell on stage. Did I mention that Carter Steele is only nine years old?
Greetings from South LA are a community-based arts education organization. They feature arts focused field trips, arts workshops and arts classes and other programs for local youth 12 and over. Attendees were able to create a book at their booth, during the Arts Experience. The workshops were led by Karina Esperanza Yanez, Jo Mitchell, Parker West and Josiah Green.
The Health Fair consisted of various organizations that enhanced the days gathering with resources, and information. UCLA Health booth offered free Blood Pressure checks performed by nurse, Roger Tadros.
The wonderful team at the MLK Community Healthcare booth was busy all day. They offered various screenings: Blood Pressure, Blood Glucose (sugar), and Body Mass Index (BMI), so that attendees can take control of their health.
Didi Hirsch Mental Health Services booth featured Megan Coulter and Aiten Palma. Village Market Place/Community Services Unlimited (CSU), Wendy Ortega provided attendee information about CalFresh enrollment. They are located at 61st and Vermont Avenue. They also offer an Urban Garden, that gives the community better food options.
Roots of South Los Angeles Wellness Center booth consisted of Adriana Medrano and Liliana Muñoz. South Central Run Club booth Zaakiyah Brisker and Jazmin Garcia. You heard the phrase “a family that prays together, stays together.” This is one way of looking at the services provided by South Central Run club, “a family that exercise together, grows healthy together.”
APLA Health, Dwayne Davis and Malik Henry shared information about health services provided by their organization. BEAM, Black Emotional and Mental Health Collective is a national training, movement building, and grant making institution that is dedicated to the healing, wellness, and liberation of Black and marginalized communities. Donny Frazier manned this booth. Representatives from Garden Butterfly were also in attendance.
The moment everyone has been waiting for. The Taste featured some healthy food options to satisfy a variety of taste buds. Sweetgreen- BBQ Chicken Salad, Chicken Teriyaki, and Hummus Crunch (vegan); Vurger Guyz Food Truck- vegan burgers; A Dozen Cousins- Cuban black beans, pollo a la brasa and Mexican red rice; Coco dealers- coconut water; Straight Up Fast Food- organic fruit juices; last, but not least, drum roll please… All Chill- a hip-hop ice cream shop served up some cool. Refreshing ice cream- cookies and cream, lemonade & peach tea sorbet, strawberry cucumber balsamic and watermelon lime sorbet.
Please follow the above-mentioned partners and organizations on social media platforms. I’m sure that they will be happy to visit your place of employment to speak your colleagues. Reach out to the food vendors to cater your next event or special occasions.
Stop by for a visit to Hank’s Mini Market, 3301 West Florence Avenue, one block East of Crenshaw Blvd. You will be glad that you did.