Reaching out at Riverwood
Inaugural Riverwood Health and Wellbeing Expo draws a diverse crowd
More than 150 community members attended the inaugural Riverwood Community Centre Health and Wellbeing Expo last week.
A joint collaboration between Sydney Local Health District and Riverwood Community Centre
, the expo brought together services from across local government, health and community services to provide information, resources and referrals.
Riverwood is a highly diverse community, with more than 60 per cent of residents born outside of Australia, and more than 1 in 4 born in China. Many of the stalls offered resources and information in language.
The expo coincided with Hepatitis Awareness Week and provided an opportunity to raise awareness about Hepatitis B and liver health more generally.
An estimated 230,000 people in Australia are living with Hepatitis B, which is one of the most common causes of liver cancer. While many people in Australia have been vaccinated, those born in overseas may not be.
“We know that people born in China, Korea, Vietnam, the Philippines, the Pacific Islands and other countries in the Middle East can be at a higher risk of Hepatitis,” the District's Executive Director of Clinical Services Integration and Population Health, Lou-Anne Blunden, said.
“It is important to have an honest conversation with your doctor, find out if you’ve been vaccinated and get tested if you’re not sure.”
Community member Mary spoke about her story of living with Hepatitis B. Mary was exposed to Hepatitis B during an operation in China. However it was only when she had a conversation with her doctor in Australia that she was able to get tested and diagnosed and then started treatment to help manage the virus.
Thanks to stallholders including Hearing Australia, the Diabetes Network, Oral Health, Liver Health, Drug and Alcohol Services, Go 4 Fun, Healthy Beginnings, BreastScreen NSW, We All Care, the Department of Human Services and Canterbury-Bankstown City Council for helping to make the expo a success.
For more information about programs and activities provided by the Riverwood Community Centre, visit www.riverwoodcommunity.org.au
If you would like to know more about Hepatitis B, included where to go to get tested, visit Hepatitis NSW at www.hep.org.au