Tyler Family Circle of Care kicked off their 18-month partnership Saturday with Intercept Cancer, an event to celebrate health and promote awareness to help reduce the risk of cancer.

At the event there were low-cost mammograms, colorectal cancer screenings, blood pleasure checks, colon cancer education classes, flu shots, games, entertainment, door prizes, bounce houses for children and a photo booth.

Intercept Cancer is also a result of a $75,000 grant that only two out of 32 cities in Texas received. The other was in Houston.

Site manager and event coordinator Jennifer Blake says that East Texas is directly affected when it come to needing support to promote health and take the correct steps to stay ahead of cancer.

“We have over 7,000 women alone that have not been tested, 5,000 of them in the immediate area where our clinics are set,” said Blake. “We wanted to do something to help them be aware that we do have services for the many women that don’t have mammograms simple because they don’t have the money for them.”

Blake runs the Athens, Jacksonville and one of the Tyler Circle of Care centers.

Over the past couple of years the center has grown and opened new centers according to CEO of Tyler Family Circle of Care Michael Adams.

“We are growing, expanding,” said Adams. “In the last couple of years we have gone from two clinics to five clinics, back them we were in Smith County alone now we are in Smith, Cherokee, and Henderson County. We have grown enormously from 33,000 visits a year not to over 70,000 visits a year.”

Adams is honored to have partnered with the NFL and the American Cancer Society.

It’s an honor,” said Adams. “I think a vast majority of everyone in the country grew up being aware of the NFL and watching NFL games. That there is a large organization such as the NFL and the American Cancer Society to come and partner with someone like Family Circle of Care, we are proud of what we are doing, but we are just this small little player in a big world, and to partner with such significant-size organizations, we are just so very proud.”

Adams remembers when he was growing up and aspired to play in the NFL.

“As a young boy I aspired to play football and your dream is to play in the NFL,” said Blake. “My kid’s dream is to be in the NFL and other kids as well. There is a large enjoyment out of it. “

This event was only one of many that will take place over the next 18-months. The center has an open enrolment for the Affordable Health Care Act that will take place from Nov. 1 through Dec. 5.

“ We have community health workers and patient advocate specialist who are going to help folks get signed up for some type of coverage which is better than none,” said Adams.

The center has also partnered with UT Health who received their own grant for a pregnancy program. The program will be a 5-year program that allows the families to have a home check up every couple of weeks. The program will be the only one of its kind in East Texas.