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In celebration of International Women’s Day 2012, BAPS Women’s Forum, Ashton hosted an enlightening programme on Sunday 25 March in association with female volunteers from other Tameside Hindu organisations and BAPS Women’s Forum members from Bolton, Leeds and Preston. More than 300 women of all ages attended, with guest of honour being the Civic Mayor of Tameside, Councillor Susan Quinn.

The event was designed to provide women with the opportunity to access information on health and well-being. Women in ethnic minority communities are sometimes difficult to reach; they are often isolated and unable to access health services due to various barriers. The Women’s Day celebrations provided a safe, encouraging environment with the opportunity to access information, advice and services relevant to their health and personal needs.

More than 50 women benefitted from blood pressure, weight and BMI checks. There was an information stall on oral health run by a dentist who offered information and advice pertinent to this specific group. A trainee GP addressed the audience on women’s health, advising on cancer, gynaecological issues and mental health. A short keep-fit session was also organised which proved very popular, prompting many requests for regular classes.

Overall, the day was a tremendous success and will provide a platform for similar events in the future. It brought together women from a range of backgrounds, professions, ages and abilities with one common aim – celebrating, inspiring and empowering women.

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