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BLACK WOMENS WELLNESS-01-07152017143506

Members of the Black Women's Wellness Day planning team pose for a group portrait in 2017. Created by Lisa Peyton-Caire (bottom row, center), the annual event aims to inspire black women to take charge of their health.

There are two events coming up in September that are of crucial importance to the health and well-being of people in Madison: the Alzheimer’s Poetry Party and Black Women's Wellness Day.

Welcome to a free party, an Alzheimer’s Poetry Party, Wednesday, Sept. 19, from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the Central Library, to celebrate how poetry stimulates memories. For an hour-and-a-half, people will enjoy a free soul-food brunch as they listen to poetry written by poets with dementia. There  will also be original poetry by Gary Glazner, who founded the Alzheimer’s Poetry Project, along with readings from other Madison poets, and the fun opportunity to create a new poem with all the people in the room.

Dementia is the wide umbrella of memory loss, while the spokes underneath the umbrella are Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, and many other memory disorders. Alzheimer’s disease is the most well-known form of dementia. 

Poetry can spark memories, despite the difficulties of forgetfulness. The Wisconsin Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center offers more information on dementia. 

Black Women's Wellness Day is Saturday, Sept. 22, from 9 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. at the Alliant Energy Center. It has a nominal admission cost, offers limited scholarships with special rates for students and seniors, and invites women to meet for information, inspiration and empowerment. While health disparities for black people is a well-researched fact, this is one day that hundreds of black women meet to set a new course for better health, individually and collectively.

There will be ethnic vendors, educational workshops, amazing keynote speakers, a special session for teen girls, lunch and a reception, with plenty of networking opportunities that center on health. Lisa Peyton Caire, founder and director of the event and the foundation, started both due to the early deaths of her mother and other women family members from poor health services. She works with a fantastic board of women to create events focused on improving health, throughout the year, with Black Women's Wellness Day as the premier event.

I will be at both events and welcome Madison to attend.

Fabu, Madison’s former poet laureate, is a consultant in African-American culture and arts. She writes a monthly column for The Capital Times. fabu@artistfabu.com

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Fabu, Madison’s former poet laureate, is a consultant in African-American culture and arts. She writes a monthly column for The Capital Times. fabu@artistfabu.com

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