ECRMC Holds 7th Baby & Children’s Expo and Resource Fair

EL CENTRO — Children were engaged in a variety of activities that kept them occupied Saturday morning allowing parents to browse resource materials from participating booths at El Centro Regional Medical Center’s seventh annual Baby & Children’s Expo resource fair at the Imperial Valley Mall.  
Sombra Chaney, the hospital’s career path and health fairs coordinator, said the resource fair is a venue for new and first time mothers to access a variety of resource materials from local agencies and organizations that would help raise their children and care for themselves. The two-hour event started at 11 a.m. 
Participating agencies provided information on caring for the unborn child, an asthma program, lead poisoning, pediatric home care, early care and education programs, and a support group that teaches about lactation. 
El Centro resident Laura Cabrera, who brought her two-year-old daughter Paulina Rodriguez, said she found a couple of good programs. One of them will help her son who is asthmatic. One of the agencies, Cabrera said, can look inside their house and help identify what may be causing the asthma.  
Children were kept busy coloring with crayons, making necklaces using colored pasta, using play dough, balloon sculptures, face painting and a puppet show.
Like Cabrera, Melissa Velasquez also she went to the expo searching for information on programs that would help her two children. Velasquez said this was her third year visiting the expo. 
According to Chaney, she gave out about 150 t-shirts for little children. Printing on each shirt advertised the 60th anniversary of ECRMC which will take place Jan. 31. 
Putting together the expo was made possible with the help of 12 students participating in the career path program. Chaney said the program allows high school students the opportunity to experience serving in a healthcare setting to find out if it is their career path. 
“They do hands-on patient care four hours a week, a total of 16 hours a month,” Chaney said. On Saturday, the students assisted with giving out information from resource agencies.