Eastside Clinic hosting series for young ladies

Published: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 at 2:40 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, July 17, 2013 at 2:40 p.m.

The University of Florida Health Eastside Community Practice will present the second discussion in an ongoing series dealing with issues facing teens, young ladies and women in the community.



What: Second in a series dealing with issues concerning teenage girls and women.
When: Monday.
Where: UF Health Eastside Community Practice, 401 NE Waldo Road.
Information: Call 352-265-7015.

“Ladies Night: The Beauty Within” will be held from 6-8 p.m. Monday at the clinic at 410 NE Waldo Road. It is not required, but those planning to attend are asked to RSVP by 5 p.m. Friday. It is free and open to the community and will feature food, games and a raffle.

Tawanna Brown-Miller, manager of the clinic, said the event is being held for teens, young ladies and women 13 and older to discuss issues and answer questions about things that concern women.

“We want to talk to young teens about the beauty within, feeling good about themselves, give them examples of inappropriate dress and teach them how to look for certain symptoms as it relate to their bodies,” said Brown-Miller.

She said the event will feature a presentation and question-and-answer session by Dr. Elvy Mercado, a physician at the clinic, who will address questions that she is often asked by teenage female patients.

“A lot of our teenage female patients ask a lot of questions about certain things, and teenage girls who don't come here may be out there wandering what is this and what is that, and may have questions that we can answer,” said Brown-Miller. “We just want to be a resource for them.”

Brown-Miller said the clinic is partners with the Regional Minority HIV/AIDS Office at the Alachua County Health Department. She said nearly 15 attended the first part of the series held in May titled “Straight Talk,” which was led by Teresa White, regional minority AIDS coordinator at the health department. Brown-Miller also said women will be able to get tested for HIV/AIDS.

White said events like “Ladies Night” are needed to help women, especially teenage girls, get the information they need to lead productive lives and make good decisions.

She said there are a lot of people and organizations afraid to talk in a straight-forward manner about real issues facing women in the community. She said it is shameful that a lot of young ladies and women find out the information they need when it is too late.

“The dialogue has to go on, and it shouldn't take until the tail end of a situation for us to address the issue,” said White, adding that parents and guardians also need to discuss issues openly with their children. “The messages shouldn't come from community organizations alone.”

Brown-Miller said those in attendance will be able to submit questions anonymously using index cards.

“We are opening up to the community to let them know we are concerned and that we are here.” Brown-Miller said.

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