More that 20 community
agencies set up on Fort Street Mall Feb. 4 for the HPU Spring
2009 Health and Wellness Expo.
A lot of times students are not taking care of themselves,” said
Director of Counseling and Behavioral Health Services, Kaniala
Kekaulike, who believes the expo gives students an opportunity
to learn about the services available to them.
Students are not going to go out and look for the services themselves,” Kekaulike
added. “Primarily, we bring the services to them.”
Most vendors focused on physical health. Kalihi Palama Health
Center offered information about safe sex and sexually transmitted
diseases. Laura Peters, a registered nurse said that more than
100 people stopped to take pamphlets and talk. She said the Center
gave out about 75 free condoms.
The American Cancer Society used models to teach people how to
check themselves for breast and testicular cancer, and they also
did demonstrations. A Society intern, Kate Thayer, said: “Cancer
hits someone at any age and any race. It’s never too early
The Expo also included P90X, an organization that sells fitness
DVDs and tracks members’ progress via blogs. They offered
a good meal plan and help with fitness, as well as support through
an interactive blog called “Wowy,” where members
can write about their exercise and diet routines.
HPU nursing students were also involved with the expo. A team of students gave
out free blood pressure tests. If someone’s results were borderline or
indicated high blood pressure, students would recommend they see a doctor.
It’s a public service,” said Mercy Mott, assistant professor of nursing. “The
blood pressure check up is always popular,” she added.
Some health vendors focused on spirituality. Reverend Dale Burke, HPU’s
chaplain, talked about the importance of faith: “Just as you need physical
health and wellness, you also need a spiritual health and wellness,” Burke
Sukyo Mahikari, another organization that focused on spirituality, emphasized
improving oneself through divine light. Participants placed hands over each other’s
head to share the light. A representative of the organization explained, “They
were receiving the light.”
Some vendors promoted fun stuff. Aloha Ke Akua Distributors sold medical supplies;
the HPU Wellness Committee promoted the Great Aloha Run; and the Life Foundation
promoted the AIDS Walk.
The event was very successful,” said Kekaulike. An HPU freshman, Lovely
Bayani, who attended the event, said, “It was very interesting, I learned
a lot of fascinating information.”