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Motherhood Matters, Youth Brigade Health Fair

Pratibha Shah

Motherhood Matters, Youth Brigade Health Fair


Wholistic Health Alliance (WHA) organized ‘Motherhood Matters, Youth Brigade Health Fair’ event on February 4th, at Academy of Creative Arts in Burlington, MA. A famous quote says “The welfare and future of our societies depend on our capacity to remain mobilized so as to improve the health of every mother and child”. WHA believes that by facilitating the physical, mental and emotional well-being of Mothers and Youth, one can impact most public health parameters positively. With this event, WHA hopes to kick start a series of events focused on specific health topics for mothers and also to scale up the engagement of Youth around health, in line with its Mission of Building Healthy Communities.

The morning session started with a panel discussion featuring Mothers from different walks of life – Sangeet Srikanth (teacher), Anuradha Mazumdar (entrepreneur), Trupti Vora (teacher,holistic practitioner), Hema Chockalingam (engineer, holistic practitioner). Panelists covered topics ranging from parenting styles to parenting challenges – what worked and what did not. The panel was moderated by Pratibha Shah. This was followed by an interactive QA session. Shikha Malhotra, a mom and WHA volunteer, took copious notes from the session. Senator Cindy Friedman presided over this segment and shared some valuable and inspiring inputs from her role as a mother of 3 grown up children.


The second half of the event showcased a vibrant Health Fair put together and presented by Wholistic Health Alliance Youth Brigade (YB) members, guided by Youth Brigade Chair Yogita Miharia. Presentation topics ranged from dangerous amounts of sugar in common junk foods, to health benefits of eating spouts. Following are the names and topics of presentation by our YB members:


YB Tables:

Anishka Srikanth (5th Grade, Newton Public School) -- Sweet Dangers

Nishika Karody (8th Grade, Lexington Public School) -- Dance your way to a healthy life

Anish Sundaram (10th Grade, Acton-Boxborough Public School) -- How much Protein do you actually need?

Aarzu Miharia (10th Grade, Winchester Public School) -- Sleepless till Saturday

Sanjana Krishna (10th Grade, Acton-Boxborough Public School) -- Easy Everyday Stress Busters

YB Posters:

Baaree M. Siddiqi (6th Grade, Burlington Public School) -- Magic of Martial Arts

Ishita Rao (9th Grade, Hollis Public School) – Stress Management

Ikshaan Rao (6th Grade, Hollis Public School) – Dental Hygiene

Adrita Mandal (5th Grade, Arlington Public School) – Stop, Slow, Go & Exercise

Anaya & Arth Joshi (7th and 4th Grade, Lexington Public School) – Sprout facts by little sprouts

It was a high energy afternoon where parents were clearly in awe of all the health information being disseminated by the well prepared and in some cases well researched members of the WHA Youth Brigade. Aarzu Miharia, a Winchester High 10th Grader, who in preparation for this Fair, surveyed almost 150 high school students, to see whether and how lack of sleep impacted their overall being. The findings revealed that almost each of them were sleep deprived, which in turn not only affected their grades but also their mood, school work, health, relationships and their quality of life in general. WHA is very proud to be developing Youth Health leaders through its recently launched Youth Brigade initiative.

To learn more about WHA Youth Brigade (YB), its mission and how to enroll, click here:


The event was supported by the following vendors:

CynDee LaRae Novitch – Juice Plus Company; www.cyndeenovitch.juiceplus.com

John Saia – Tui Na Oriental Bodywork; http://www.jsaiahealth.com/

Jeesica McGovern – Safe Helps You; https://safehelpsyou.org/

Solin Chea & Ruth Nieves – Ambit Energy; Clean Energy

We would like to thank Senator Cindy Friedman for taking out time from her very busy schedule to preside and participate in our event. Her words were very inspiring and empowering. We are immensely grateful to Academy of Creative Arts for opening doors to their beautiful space for our event. We would like to give a shout out to Pressed Café Burlington and Wegmans for their contribution to our Raffle. We really appreciate TV Asia and Lokvani for their constant and continued support for our organization and events always. We would like to acknowledge Smita’s Boutique and Natural Awakenings magazine for their support to our event. Last but not the least, a huge thanks to the army of volunteers that descended on Feb 4th, to make our event possible and a success. We could not have done it without your generous support and energy.

WHA conducted a post event survey which is still active and can be taken here:


A few select review quotes from attendees as well as presenters/speakers:

“The Wholistic Health Alliance does important work to promote healthy lifestyles for ourselves, our families, and our friends throughout the community. This weekend’s event was engaging and informative, and I look forward to watching the organization grow as it continues to educate the community about the value of ‘wholistic’ health,” said Senator Cindy Friedman.

“WHA organized the event on February 4th with a very important objective of approaching health in a wholistic way rather than symptomatic way. The young presenters of Youth Brigade were knowledgeable and enthusiastic in sharing their findings. WHA provided these youths a platform to share their research while feeling empowered to take control of their own health. It was a morning well spent!” Trupti Vora, Panelist, High School teacher

“Peer-to-peer learning was valuable!! Simple and effective format made for a fun learning experience!!” Sampath family

"I really enjoyed being an active part of the health fair, it was a great opportunity to learn things about health I hadn't given much thought about before and was a lot of fun to share knowledge about a topic I’m passionate about. I learned things from the health fair that I am now using to improve my lifestyle." Aarzu Miharia, YB Member, Presenter 

“It was amazing to see so many young kids taking charge of health issues. WHA YB has provided a great platform at the grass root level to help create awareness and action.” Aditi Taylor, attendee

“It is a great initiative and good to see young kids are taking interest. One just thought, why only motherhood? WHA can include fathers too? There are many single fathers and they also struggles for similar challenges like mothers for upbringing. May be ratio is small but just a thought.” Rakhee Wagal, attendee

"As i was working on this project with my sister Anaya, I learned a bunch about sprouts and have been eating sprouts myself for the last 2-3 weeks and have started enjoying healthy eating habits... now we are pushing our parents to eat healthy with us as well..." Arth Joshi, YB Presenter

“As a parent it was a breath of fresh air to see the Youth taking on the lead in matters of healthy eating, hygiene and exercising!! WHA has been providing a wonderful platform to the youth to delve into the most important topic, HEALTH, that usually gets lost in the day to day rigmarole and rat race of life. The recent event hosted by WHA regarding Motherhood Matters and Youth Brigade Health Fair was a tremendous success, building awareness amongst the Youth and parents and at the same time inspiring everyone who came to the event! Kudos to the WHA team!! Can’t wait for more wonderful work to come from this tea !!” Aneesha Kaordy, YB mom

“It was a great event where MA State representative was a speaker. There were posters from several children on topics ranging from proper sleep to physical education. Our son Baaree presented a poster on Karate benefits for physical and mental health. I congratulate you Dr. Pratibah Shah for this successful event. We need these kind of events for kids to participate and learn from each other. We are looking forward to the next event. Thank you for taking a great initiative.” Razia Boston, YB mom

“I found the event really inspiring and helpful, seeing so many younger people so knowledgeable in nutrition. I learned a great deal about different nutritious foods and ways to stay healthy. I found the format to be very inviting and overall it was a fun experience, and I feel it was helpful in bringing nutritional awareness to others.” Anish Sundaram, YB Member, Presenter.

Our next Motherhood event is on March 8th.

Details here: https://www.facebook.com/events/159150628061550/

PC: Pankaj Shah, BDC TV, parents

**Wholistic Health Alliance is a 501(c)3 nationally launched non-profit organization with the vision of providing a platform for holistic health practitioners to come together under one umbrella, fostering collaborations, building stronger networks and enabling greater synergy with the community. WHA aims to help build healthier communities, through education and information dissemination about simple tools for primary prevention and holistic solutions for health and wellness.  WHA continues to expand its offerings and has reached and impacted the community significantly in a short span of about 3 yrs. In order to continue to increase our outreach and impact and to get the word out on natural and wholesome ways of living, health and wellness - we need YOU, our community, to join in in our initiative – please support, share, collaborate!! 


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