CareSouth Carolina has partnered with local farmers to bring pop-up produce stands to its medical sites. According to CareSouth officials, their goal is to promote healthy dieting and proper nutrition across the PeeDee.
“Obesity and heart disease is just at an al time high in our country right now, so we really want to help change that statistic and teach people about good whole foods,” said Danielle Arnette, Employee Health & Wellness Nurse.
A News13 special report showed that the PeeDee and Grand Strand received an “F” when it comes to stroke risks. Common stroke risk factors include diabetes, high cholesterol, poor diet and more.
In order to teach local communities how to improve their health, Arnette said it’s important for CareSouth employees to lead by example.
“How can we as medical providers tell our patients, you know, “you got to lose weight, you got to lower your blood pressure. We need you doing this, and this, and this, if we as the medical providers aren’t doing it ourselves?”
The produce stands are set up from 10 A.M. to 6 P.M. Monday-Friday at different CareSouth locations. On Tuesdays, it’s at the Bishopville main site (545 Sumter Highway); on Wednesdays at the Hartsville medical center (1268 South Fourth Street) and at the Bennettsville main site (999 Cheraw Street); and at the Rosa Lee Gerald Center (737 S. Main St., Society Hill) every other Friday.
People can purchase strawberries, tomatoes, zucchini, plums and more. For some locals, staying healthy is their only option.
“At my age, it’s very important because it gives you strength to do the things you need to do, especially with this heat,” said Michael Griggs.
CareSouth employees told News13 the stand has also given them the option of having a healthy snack during work instead of depending on a vending machine.