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Walk for fall prevention set for Friday

Community Home Health Care spearheading event

Every year, Lawrence County residents take part of the State of Ohio’s Steady U’s “10 Million Steps to Prevent Falls” program. The goal is to have 4,000 Ohioans walk a mile, which equals 10 million steps. It also brings awareness to preventing falls and the possible medical side effects in older Americans.

This is the fourth year for the event and will be held from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 21, on the parking lot adjacent to the Ironton Farmers Market.
Community Home Health Care is spearheading this year’s free event and is part of September being Fall Prevention Month.

“Being a home health agency, we know how important it is for our clients to maintain their independence and keep them in their homes as long as possible,” said marketing director Samantha Gallian. “A prevention initiative like this is something close to our hearts and we wanted to jump on board and be the host this year, to hopefully, get a big crowd down there. If we can help just one person and they don’t have to be hospitalized, then we have done our job.”

There will be a number of agencies and businesses that will give out information and do health screenings. They will also be passing out fresh fruit and water to attendees.

“We’re hoping to have a few more vendors than last year,” Gallian said. “We are not raising any money, we are just trying to raise awareness.”

Tara Boggs, a co-owner of Community Home Health Care, said they are involving local students in the 10 Million Steps.

“We will be taking fresh fruit and water to them” she said. “They will be walking around the tracks on their lunch breaks. And students from the Collins Career Technical Center will be attending too.”

They hope the Ironton High School choir will come down to entertain throughout the event. Susan Taylor will sing the National Anthem during the opening ceremony.

Last year, Steady U logged 56 million steps during the statewide event, and Lawrence County logged the most steps of the 88 counties in Ohio.

“Lawrence County won with the most steps, which is impressive when you think about the population of Franklin County,” Gallian said. “I’m pretty proud of our little county and definitely want to continue that this year.”

If they win again for the highest number of steps, it would be the third year in a row.

Beverly Young, a co-owner of Community Home Health Care, said preventing falls is very important to their clients.

“If they do have a hip injury or something when they fall, they have to go to rehab, they are not in their homes,” she said. “We would like to prevent that. We want them to be healthy and remain in their homes with their families.”

She added that falls could lead to more medical issues.

“So often, it isn’t just a broken bone,” Young said. “And financially, it can be a burden.”

Steady U has several tips for preventing falls, including moving around furniture to make a home safer. For more information, go to https://aging.ohio.gov/steadyu