June 2017 Chair’s Corner

Hello MLHC friends and members,

It’s almost summer and the Milwaukee Latino Health Coalition has some great things going on in the next few weeks. The Steering Committee and I hope that you consider getting involved with some of the following events and opportunities:
• General Coalition Meeting on June 22, 3:30 – 5:30 PM: Issue Based Organizing 101 – We will have Luz Sosa from Citizen Action of Wisconsin, and Keisha Krumm from Southeastern Wisconsin Common Ground provide hand-on presentations about how to start some issue-based organizing as an individual or on behalf of an organization. RSVP HERE
• Best Practices and Policy Action Team Meeting on June 30, 10:00 – 11:30 AM: Oral Health Strategy Meeting – After completing a community member survey last summer, the BPP team has decided to move forward with access to oral health care in the Latino Community as the group’s focus area. Join the group to help set the next year’s goals and strategies around oral health access. RSVP HERE
• Join our Steering Committee: The MLHC is seeking members to add to its Steering Committee. If you or someone you know may be interested in joining our dynamic group, please email mlhcoalition@gmail.com.
• Volunteer for MLHC Mental Action Team’s Hopeline: The Mental Health Action team is looking for bilingual volunteers to text community members who many be dealing with hardship or stress and provide support and resources that may help them in their time of need. If interested in volunteering, please text APOYO to 839663.

Some other things you should keep on your radar this June:

June is Men’s Health Awareness month so now is a perfect time to discuss the silent health crisis facing our families. To illustrate this silent crisis, Men’s Health Network published grim statistics in 2016 that many will find surprising, because as a whole, we just don’t talk about them. For example, men face many avoidable health risks since they visit their doctors for preventive check-ups less frequently than women. Additionally, men have a higher death rate for the leading causes of death such heart disease, cancer, and unintentional injuries compared to their female counterparts. Researchers are busy determining why men face greater health risks, but for now let’s encourage the men in our lives to lead healthier lifestyles with regular exercise, healthy diets, and routine doctor visits.

It is also Alzheimer’s & Brain Awareness Month. Alzheimer’s affects everyone regardless of nationality, race, ethnicity, or socioeconomic status. That said, Latinos are about one and one-half times as likely to have Alzheimer’s or other dementias as whites. Latinos are the fastest growing ethnic group in the U.S. and it is estimated that the number of older Latinos with Alzheimer’s or other dementias may increase from less than 200,000 currently to 1.3 million in 2050. Alzheimer’s Disease is not a normal part of aging. For more information and local resources, visit the Alzheimer’s Association SE Wisconsin Chapter or contact Virginia Zerpa at 414.431.8811.

Hope to see you all at some of the upcoming events and that you consider getting involved!

Caroline Gomez-Tom