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Workshop about perimenopause draws interest from local women

The event, titled 'The Style and Power of Perimenopause' took place on Saturday, May 4 at the McArthur Place community hall.

Women gathered at the McArthur Place community room earlier this month to learn about perimenopause while helping to raise funds and awareness for a local cause.  

The women's health and wellness event, titled ‘The Power and Style of Perimenopause’, was put on by Straight and Arrow Boutique in Plamondon in association with the Lac La Biche-based Hope Haven Women’s Shelter, with proceeds going to the local shelter.  

The term perimenopause refers to the time during which a women’s body makes the natural transition to menopause, therefore marking the end of reproductive years.  

‘The Power and Style of Perimenopause’ featured a keynote speaker and presenter, Chantal Gauthier-Vaillancourt, as well as a presentation by personal image consultant Shelby Eloria, who showed the women present simple ways to dress for perimenopause and menopause symptoms.  

The event, which also included products on display by Straight and Arrow Boutique as well as local businesses Pine and Peony, Soak Intention, Foraging Alive, and Chic Boutique/Bling Bebe, got underway with Gauthier-Vaillancourt her presentation titled ‘The Power of Perimenopause’.  

The Plamondon resident, who is a long-time local midwife and educator in the area of women’s health and wellness, address those women who sat around the McArthur Place community hall, first sharing some lighthearted-and at times, quite humorous-stories about her life and family before talking about knowledge and awareness of perimenopause, signs and symptoms, resources and support, as well as how women can power through it. 

The day’s program also included a lunch along with brochures containing healthy recipes for attendees to take home with them. 

Allison Dupre, owner of Straight and Arrow Boutique, said the event is important as it provides information and support about a subject that isn’t often discussed.  

“I feel like it addresses a topic that every woman goes through, but we’re just starting to talk about it now,” Dupre told Lakeland This Week.   

She said there are so many symptoms of perimenopause that affect the everyday lives of women. She added that the stigma the surrounding perimenopause is slowly being removed. She said women are able to get together to talk about it and explore this process that often starts in women between their late 30s and early 50s.  

Dupre said while Straight and Arrow has put on other events in the past, ‘The Power and Style of Perimenopause’ is the first one of its kind that she has held. The idea to put on a fundraiser for Hope Haven, Dupre explained, came about when she applied for a grant through Lac La Biche County FCSS. During this process, it was recommended that she partner with some local, non-profit organizations.  

Through attending this event, Dupre anticipated that these women would not only come away with more knowledge and understanding of perimenopause, but receive support and encouragement as well.  

“I hope they just gain some education…I hope they gain support…and I hope they feel encouraged and enlightened, and at the end of the day empowered to actually enjoy this new chapter in life,” she stated.  


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