Over 100 preschoolers from El Camino, Ellwood, and Isla Vista elementary schools participated in a free health fair Friday morning at Isla Vista’s Teen Center. The fair was the first of three upcoming events to check low-income preschool kids’ vision, hearing, teeth, height, and weight. Over 20 area clinics, nonprofits, and prevention centers contributed resources.
Last year, the screenings found that nearly 40 percent of participating pre-K kids had dental decay and another 40 percent were in the overweight or obese range. Georgene Lowe from the Santa Barbara Education Office said they follow the motto, “Do not screen unless you can intervene.” Collaborative efforts by Isla Vista Youth Projects and Family Resource Centers will provide follow-up exams and treatments for preschoolers who need it.
The fairs expect to serve nearly 750 children total from Isla Vista, Santa Barbara, and Lompoc. The next two fairs are slated for October 18 at the Franklin Community Center in Santa Barbara and for October 25 at the Lompoc Unified School District’s Adult Education Center.