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Shelley Flaherty

Founder, Strategic Planning Committee, Community Steering Committee

Shelley was born and raised in the Cambridgeport community before moving to Camp LeJuene, NC in 1992 to join her husband. The mother of 4 children, all currently attending area colleges, she met Dita after returning to the area in 1999 when their daughters became friends in their afterschool program. The mother of twins, she became interested in family health and health disparities while on bed rest for 7 months before their birth at 29 weeks. After moving back to the area, her twin’s health issues continued, so in 2008 when Dita approached her about starting a program that would bring black women in the area together with Black women providers to address the barriers to receiving good health care, she jumped at the opportunity. Coming from a typical African American family with the big three: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes, she says, “The idea that I could help facilitate a way to better health outcomes in my community seemed too good to be true. If something as simple as having a conversation with people you feel comfortable with, in a non-threatening environment could provide myself and other women like me with the information and confidence to be advocates for ourselves and others I was willing to do whatever it took to make that happen.”

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