By Kathy L. Collins

The Outreach Clinic will hold its Fourth Annual Outreach Clinic Tea on Saturday, February 24 from 12 to 2 p.m. The event will be held at St. Andrew’s United Methodist Church located at 3315 Bryan Rd. in Brandon. This is a free Community Ask Event. This means that you will be asked for a donation after listening to a short impact speech and hearing patient testimonials.

Deborah Meegan, Executive Director of The Outreach Clinic explained, “We are hoping to educate the community about the important and vital work The Outreach Clinic does by providing healthcare to the low-income uninsured. We are looking to engage individual donors who want to support us and become ‘lifesavers’ in our community.”

The Outreach Clinic provides nearly $2 million in health care services each year. A vast majority of this is for treatment of chronic conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure. Without treatment for these chronic conditions, patients face blindness, loss of limbs, stroke, heart attack and even death.

The majority of those who come to The Outreach Clinic cannot afford health insurance or health care. Meegan said, “Our patients are area residents who earn minimum wage, work part time, work in the service industries or are self-employed. They do not have access to employer sponsored health insurance.” Meegan added, “The Outreach Clinic has been the health care safety net for thousands of individuals and families for the last 28 years. Every patient has a story. Hopefully with the community’s support, we can continue to provide the health care that can turn their story from a sad and tragic one to one filled with hope through the gift of a healthy life.”

All of the services provided by The Outreach Clinic are given as a result of donations received from the community. They have over 250 medical and non-medical volunteers and community partners who donate over 9,000 volunteer hours each year.

Meegan said, “The need in our community is huge. Sadly, you do not need to travel to a third world country to see people dying from lack of health care. It is happening right here in our own back yard. That is why it is so important for our community to support us.”

The Outreach Clinic Tea is successful with the help of Table Hosts and Hostesses. You can decorate your table, invite seven of your friends, have fun and support a worthy non-profit that helps those who need the lifesaving health care that The Outreach Clinic provides. To become a Table Host or Hostess, please contact Teri Kerker at outreachclinictea@gmail.com.

The Outreach Clinic is located at 517 N. Parsons Ave. in Brandon. To learn more or to donate, please visit www.theoutreachclinic.com.