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Bay Pines VA Healthcare System

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Bay Pines VA to host VA2K “Walk and Roll” Event and Women Veterans Health Fair

May 14, 2012

stylized human running - VA2KST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Summer is fast approaching in the Sunshine State and Bay Pines VA Healthcare System employees are gearing up to “beat the heat” to help Veterans.

The Bay Pines VA Medical Center will host its second annual VA2K "Walk and Roll" event on May 16, between 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. on the Bay Pines VA campus. The event coincides with National Employee Health and Fitness Day and also raises awareness of the hospital’s commitment to ending Veteran Homelessness.

"There is no doubt that wellness activities promote a healthy workforce and ultimately increase employee satisfaction productivity,” said Kris Brown, Interim Director, Bay Pines VA. “This event not only benefits the health and wellness of our workforce, it also helps raise awareness of our commitment to Veterans who are homeless. It’s a win-win.”

As part of registering for the event, participants will have the opportunity to donate goods or money to benefit homeless Veterans. Goods accepted for donation include new hygiene products like soap, shampoo, tooth brush/paste, toilette paper, cleaning supplies, alarm clocks and clothing.

The opening ceremony for the event and start of the two-kilometer route will begin at 10:30 from the J.C. Cobb room inside the hospital. The route will take participants outside of the facility and twice around Lake Timucuan located on the eastside of the campus. The event is Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accessible.

The Bay Pines VA will also use the event to announce the formation of walking groups as part of the Walk With Ease program. Walk With Ease is a six-week walking program that can be completed at home, work, or wherever a participant prefers.  In August 2011, the Bay Pines VA received a grant from the Florida Department of Health in order the roll out the program to Florida Veterans, their families and friends, VA employees and volunteers – the first ever collaboration between the Florida Department of Health and the VA.

The Bay Pines VA2K event is just one of many taking place May 16 at VA facilities across the country.

In conjunction with the event, the hospital will host its first annual Women Veterans Health Fair. The fair will also take place inside the J.C. Cobb room and runs from 10:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Informational booths manned by doctors, nurses and other healthcare professionals will be available offering a wide range of VA services and information for female Veterans. The health fair also coincides with a national observance – National Women’s Health Week.

“The theme for National Women’s Health Week this year is ‘It’s Your Time’,” said Julia Adams, Women Veterans Program Manager, Bay Pines VA. “The week aims to empower women to make their health and wellness a top priority,” she continued.

While the fair targets Women Veterans, Adams said she encourages everyone to stop by the fair to check it out.

Pre-registration for the VA2K is not required and those interested in participating should plan to arrive at Bay Pines VA to begin the walk anytime between 10:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. The Women’s Veterans Health Fair is an open event. Registration is not required.

Veterans, their family members, VA employees and members of the Tampa Bay community are invited to participate in the VA2K and Women Veterans Health Fair. Media representatives are also welcome to attend the event. For more information, please call Jason Dangel, Acting Public Affairs Officer, Bay Pines VA Healthcare System, at 727-798-1531.

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