Health & Family

Hospice, caregiving, Alzheimer’s topics of interest in November

Gaston hospice

“Thoughts in Passing,” a multimedia event featuring the work of British portrait artist Claudea Bicen, will open to the public at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at First Presbyterian Church, 1621 E. Garrison Blvd., Gastonia.

Sponsored by Gaston Hospice, the project includes nine audio-visual portraits compiled by Bicen after she met with hospice patients in California and asked them to reflect on life and mortality. Bicen’s work has been selected for exhibitions at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., the Mall Galleries in London and the National Arts Club in New York.

Free medicine

N.C. MedAssist has scheduled an Over-the-Counter Medicine Give Away Day from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the Shifa Free Health Clinic, 4301 Shamrock Drive. Another will be held in Gastonia from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 3 at Erwin Center gymnasium, 913 North Pryor St.

The events are open to anyone 18 and older, and identification is not required. Eligible low-income adults and children can receive free medicine for allergies, pain, indigestion and colds as well as first-aid items and vitamins. Details:

Alzheimer’s disease

Ann Campanella and Pam Brunell will host a free “A Conversation About Alzheimer’s and Dementia” at Main Street Books in Davidson at 6 p.m. on Nov. 17. Campanella, the author of “Motherhood: Lost and Found,” a memoir about her mother’s experience with Alzheimer’s disease, will read from her book and invite the audience to share their stories. Brunell, a certified dementia care practitioner, will be available for questions.


Caregiving Corner, a Huntersville-based business owned by Jennifer Szakaly, has launched a caregiver support website, Aging Well Charlotte, to help adult children provide care for aging parents. The website – – includes a private family blog and links to online support groups, articles and tips for caregivers. Details:

Health Guidance

The inaugural Health Guidance 5K will start at 8 a.m. Nov. 19 at the Johnston YMCA in NoDa and end at Amelie’s French Bakery on North Davidson Street.

Proceeds will benefit Health Guidance, a Charlotte nonprofit that provides free services to families with cancer and other serious diseases. Registration is $30 now, $35 on race day. Details:

Karen Garloch