HRT for Women in Azalea Park, FL

Discover Effortless Aging with Hormone Therapy for Women

There's real substance to the notion that every woman is different. No two person's attitudes, bodies, or goals in life are ever exactly the same. But if there's one thing that every person shares, it's that our bodies change as we get older. That's especially true for females over the age of 50. One day you wake up, roll out of bed, and attack the day with vigor and positivity.

The next day, it seems like your emotions are out of control. Despite dieting and healthy life choices, your weight won't go down. It seems like you're having to deal with uncomfortable hot flashes every other hour of the day. Life can be hard after 50, especially when it seems like your body is plotting against you.

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But the truth is, these changes are a completely normal part of the aging process for women. As you might be aware, this change is called menopause, and according to the NIH, more than one million women go through it every year. This change in life marks the end of your period. During this time, your hormones begin to deplete, causing a range of symptoms that can be difficult to deal with without professional help. Some of the most common symptoms of menopause include:

  • Hot Flashes
  • Vaginal Dryness
  • Low Libido or Sexual Desire
  • Mood Swings
  • Lack of Focus
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Chronic Tiredness
  • Increased Body Weight

Trying to juggle and cope with the symptoms of hormone deficiency can be rough for women and their partners because many of them are linked to nutrition, stress, and lack of exercise.

Fortunately, getting older and going through menopause doesn't have to be the worst time in your life. Hormone replacement therapy for women in Azalea Park, FL, can help correct the imbalances in your body that are brought on by menopause. These safe, proven treatments from NV Medical Orlando can help balance your hormones during menopause and even help you reclaim your youth.

Hormone Replacement Therapy Azalea Park, FL

AboutWhat is HRT for Women?

As a locally owned and operated shutter business, doing right by our customers is our top priority. We know that there are many options out there, so we at the Shutter Shop specialize in providing our customers the highest quality product at the most reasonable price.

We're able to offer impeccable customer service and high-quality shutters and blinds at low prices because, unlike others, we are the manufacturers. That means everything you order from the Shutter Shop is made right here in Georgetown, FL by our talented team. We're proud to say that products made here at The Shutter Shop are shipped to builders and homeowners all across the United States.

It all started when Shawn Reardon, The Shutter Shop's sole owner, and his wife moved from Santee to Georgetown in 2003. They were new to the ins and outs of shutters but wanted to start up a new business on the coast of South Carolina. They started out manufacturing plantation shutters only and a couple years later began manufacturing all exterior window coverings also.

 HRT Azalea Park, FL

How Does Hormone Replacement Therapy for Women Work?

At NV Medical Orlando, our HRT treatments for women include the use of pellets, which are about the size of a tic-tac and contain hormones like estrogen and testosterone. These pellets are implanted subcutaneously to supply your body with the hormones it needs. Each pellet contains a tiny number of bioidentical hormones that are released steadily into your bloodstream for up to five months.

Unlike other sexual health centers, every HRT treatment provided by our women's sexual health clinic is tailored to our patients. While natural hormone replacement therapy is effective for many women, every patient is different. That's why it's important that you speak with a board-certified doctor, like Gina Kirkpatrick, before starting any HRT treatment to make sure it's right for you.

Is HRT for Women in Azalea Park, FL, Right for You?

When a woman's hormones are balanced, there's a better chance that she will be able to live a happy, normal life. That's where the beauty of HRT for women begins to unfold because it balances hormones in your body that would otherwise be disrupted due to menopause.

 HRT For Women Azalea Park, FL

HRT treatments for women are revolutionary in that they allow you to enjoy life without suffering through all the pitfalls associated with getting older. However, at NV Medical Orlando, our team understands that no two women have the same bodies or hormone imbalances. That's why our board-certified and fellowship-trained urologist, Gina Kirkpatrick, D.O., provides personalized HRT therapy options for women.

Is HRT treatment from NV Medical Orlando the answer to your mood, weight, and exhaustion problems? That's the million-dollar question we get almost every day. And honestly, it's difficult to say until we can see you in our office and conduct a thorough examination. What we can say is that when your hormones are balanced optimally during menopause, you have a much better chance of living a normal life without the overwhelming symptoms that many women experience.

At NV Medical Orlando, we prioritize helping women balance their hormones to live healthy, fulfilling lives. Our HRT therapy options aren't just about getting you on a regimen - it's about giving your body the nutrition and love it deserves through a patient-first approach.

 Low Libido Azalea Park, FL

DifferenceThe NV Medical Orlando Difference

Unlike some clinics that rush their patients into therapy, our team focuses on our patient's needs and goals first. To achieve those goals, we conduct thorough blood tests and comprehensively examine your health during your first visit. That way, we can discover your underlying problems, determine your hormone levels, and get a better sense of your needs.

After that, our dedicated physician will develop a personalized treatment plan for you. The goal of this plan is to outline your HRT journey so that we can balance your hormones and your whole body. During this process, we'll keep a close eye on your hormone replacement therapy for women in Azalea Park, FL. Like a web, HRT therapy covers several facets of female health. Each piece of that web works in tandem with others to make up how you feel. If we need to tweak aspects of your plan to help you feel better, we'll let you know and will adjust accordingly.

At the end of the day, we want you to feel safe, empowered, and like you're part of our family. After all, true HRT for women doesn't just balance hormones - it optimizes wellbeing and health, too. That's why NV Medical Orlando is dedicated to giving you a one-of-a-kind experience and specialized care, so you'll never feel like you're falling through the cracks.

Up to this point, we've talked about all the greatness that can come with HRT from NV Medical Orlando - but what are the actual benefits? Let's take a look.

Benefits of Hormone Replacement Therapy for Women in Azalea Park, FL

Most women who consider natural hormone therapy are curious about its benefits and the results of long-term clinical investigations. Who wouldn't be? When it comes to the symptoms of menopause, natural estrogen therapy can be incredibly effective for conditions like lack of sleep, weight gain, excessive sweating, mood swings, and more.

In addition to promoting overall health, HRT for women can help reverse sexual symptoms of menopause, like vaginal dryness and general discomfort during intercourse.

When used as part of a comprehensive preventive healthcare plan, HRT can be an invaluable tool for women. That's because hormone therapies like estrogen treatment have been shown in clinical investigations to reduce the risk of serious concerns like osteoporosis and bone loss.

But that's just the start. Clinical studies report a wide range of HRT benefits, including:

  • Improved Mood
  • Better Memory
  • Improved Concentration
  • Longer and Healthier Sleep
  • Fewer Hot Flashes
  • Less Chance of Depression
  • Optimized Vaginal Health
  • Improved Muscle Mass and Strength
  • Improved Blood Pressure
  • Better Cholesterol Levels
  • Less Risk of Alzheimer's
  • Reduced Risk of Breast Cancer

To learn more about the benefits of HRT and whether treatment is right for you, contact our office today. If you're ready to feel better about getting older, NV Medical Orlando is here to help you every step of the way.

 Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy Azalea Park, FL

Your HRT Timeline

As we mentioned earlier, no two women will have the same hormone levels or HRT therapy needs. As such, every woman's timeline for menopause relief will be different. Generally, however, a standard HRT timeline may look like this:

week 1

Around week one, many women notice that they experience fewer hot flashes than normal. Some women notice these improvements only a few days after their first treatment.

week 2

After about two to three weeks of HRT for women in Azalea Park, FL, many women notice that they have less irritability, anxiety, and fewer mood swings. During this phase, hot flashes should continue diminishing, and sleep may improve. Other benefits of HRT, like increased libido and more energy, are also expected during this phase.

week 3

Starting around weeks three to four, many HRT patients will notice drastic improvements in menopausal symptoms.

week 4

Around weeks five and six, it's common for women to notice physical differences like healthier skin, less hair loss, and even weight loss. With time, these improvements become even more pronounced.

Additional Services for Optimal Female Health

At NV Medical Orlando, we don't only treat our patients for sexual health and wellness. Because Dr. Gina Kirkpatrick is a fellowship-trained urologist, our clinic has the capacity to treat all matters related to sexual health and wellness, including certain urologic conditions.


Vaginal Rejuvenation

Have you started to notice that things “down under” are different than they were years ago? Are you experiencing disconcerting symptoms such as:

  • Burning
  • Irritation After Sex
  • Dryness
  • Urinary Incontinence
  • Unfulfilling Intercourse
  • Vaginal Laxity (Lack of Tightness)
  • Diminished Lubrication During Intercourse

If you've noticed any of the above symptoms, you may be dealing with vaginal or pelvic floor laxity. For women dealing with these issues, vaginal rejuvenation often answers their problems. Vaginal rejuvenation is an umbrella term that covers several vaginal corrective procedures. These procedures can correct problems that occur after giving birth or during menopause.

Traditionally, these conditions have been treated with invasive surgeries and with supplements like vaginal estrogen or hyaluronic acid. However, modern treatment options like laser vaginal rejuvenation are growing in popularity and can help women avoid the pitfalls of surgery.

In fact, study centers around the world are using monopolar radiofrequency for vaginal laxity in premenopausal women. Studies show that treatment is safe and helps improve vaginal laxity and other sexual dysfunctions. Additionally, anecdotal evidence shows that patients have less urine leakage when coughing, laughing, sneezing, and exercising.

If you're unsatisfied with the appearance of your vagina or have noticed increased looseness or diminished lubrication, don't lose hope. Vaginal rejuvenation, HRT for women in Azalea Park, FL, or a combo of the two may be right for you.


Vaginal Dryness

The primary cause of vaginal atrophy or vaginal dryness is the reduction of estrogen. Typically, women lose estrogen during and after menopause. Childbirth and hysterectomy can also be causes that reduce estrogen production. To help women restore natural levels of estrogen, thereby treating vaginal dryness, NV Medical Orlando offers three types of therapies:

Vaginal Therapy

Estrogen cream is applied intravaginally at night to improve vaginal blood flow, lubrication, and elasticity. Alternatively, women can choose s Hyaluronic Acid Vaginal Suppository, which provides hormone-free relief from vaginal dryness. This treatment is best for women who cannot undergo hormone replacement therapy.

Minimally Invasive Vaginal Therapy

Viveve Radiofrequency Technology, which uses cryogen-cooled radio frequencies to heat and cool vaginal tissue, is designed to improve:

  • Blood Flow
  • Vaginal Lubrication
  • Vaginal Laxity
  • Stress Urinary Incontinence

This popular treatment is performed discreetly, is painless, and usually takes less than an hour to complete.

Systemic Therapy

HRT for women in Azalea Park, FL, can be administered as oral pills, creams, pellets, or as injections under the skin. The specific type of hormones, their delivery mechanisms, and dosage levels are determined on a patient-by-patient basis after a detailed history, physical exam, and laboratory study.

Low Libido in Women

If you're a woman who finds herself lacking sexual desire or the act of sexual intercourse, you're not alone. In fact, research from 1999 shows that as much as 22% of women in the U.S. report low sex drive. Though this issue is often underreported, its causes and the available treatments are well-known.

Causes of low libido in women include:


Hysterectomies often result in a drastic drop of testosterone and estrogen in a woman's body. This drop in hormones has been linked to low libido.


Some medicines that are used to treat depression and anxiety, specifically SSRIs that inhibit serotonin, have been demonstrated to reduce sexual arousal.


Estrogen affects blood flow to vaginal and genital tissues. Reducing estrogen, which can occur during and after menopause, childbirth or surgical menopause created secondary to a hysterectomy can result in reduced vaginal blood flow and lubrication.

Overall Health

Studies on post-menopausal women have demonstrated that patients in poor health report lower sexual desire. In fact, symptoms like chronic pain, fatigue, and mood swings caused by chronic illnesses all contribute to decreased female libido.

Though low libido and the effects of unbalanced hormones can be concerning, treatment is available at NV Medical Orlando. First, a thorough physical exam and health history will be conducted to help our experts develop an optimal treatment plan for you. During your evaluation, you may be asked to complete a questionnaire that helps us assess your symptoms further. That way, we can craft an appropriate treatment regimen to address your symptoms and concerns.

The type of treatment recommended depends on your identified needs and may include hormone replacement therapy for women, vaginal treatments, oral medications, sexual therapies, or additional treatment regimens.

The Premier Choice for FDA-Approved HRT for Women in Azalea Park, FL

If you're a woman suffering day-to-day from the symptoms of menopause, now is the time to balance your hormones and reclaim your life. Sure, menopause is a natural process that occurs in almost every woman's body. But that doesn't mean you must forego treatments like HRT to make your transition easier. Who says the second half of your life can't be better than the first?

At NV Medical Orlando, we have helped countless women overcome the life-changing symptoms associated with menopause and hormone imbalances, and we're here for you, too. Contact our office today to schedule your evaluation and take the first step toward long-term relief.

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Latest News in Azalea Park, FL

Bask in the Beauty of Kraft Azalea Garden

Escape to a small, lovely park in the Orlando area that locals have loved for decades. Kraft Azalea Garden is situated on the shore of Lake Maitland, part of the Winter Park Chain of Lakes. This tranquil place is free and easy to visit. Here's everything you need to know ab...

Escape to a small, lovely park in the Orlando area that locals have loved for decades. Kraft Azalea Garden is situated on the shore of Lake Maitland, part of the Winter Park Chain of Lakes. This tranquil place is free and easy to visit. Here's everything you need to know about visiting Kraft Azalea Garden in Winter Park.

What is Kraft Azalea Garden known for?

The park is known for its picturesque scenery. Towering cypress trees, lush greenery, and azalea bushes bloom with vibrant colors during the peak season, typically in late winter – early spring. It is one of our favorite spots in Orlando for a picnic and there are often small weddings in Orlando held here.

With its location along the shores of Lake Maitland, there are plenty of beautiful views of the lake. First thing in the morning you may be able to spot active Florida wildlife or Catch the sunset in the evening over Lake Maitland on one of the shore-situated benches, or dock on the right side of the park.

Stroll hand in hand through blooming azaleas, bask in the shade of majestic cypress trees, and embrace the tranquility of Lake Maitland's shimmering waters. The park has a small trail lined with white seashells instead of rocks, the greenery is vibrant and there is a gorgeous arch-like centerpiece.

This structure is called an exedra. This iconic spot is flanked by benches, perfect for sitting and embracing the moment. There's even a quote embossed on it, “Pause friend let beauty refresh the spirit.”

It's easy to make Kraft Azalea Garden part of a special day enjoying Winter Park and Park Avenue. The park is situated in a gorgeous Winter Park neighborhood. Enjoy a stroll around the park and continue through the tree-lined streets of Winter Park for views of absolutely stunning homes.

The park offers opportunities for outdoor activities like picnicking, walking, jogging, and simply relaxing amidst nature. The serene environment makes it a great place for meditation and photography.

This park is also gorgeous for engagements during the sunset, I witnessed one during this visit and it was heartfelt and lovely. Have a fun photo shoot with your beau!

The park is located in the historic Winter Park area, there are many options to pick up some take-out from a local restaurant for an adorable picnic in the park. One of my favorites is Park Avenue Smoothie Cafe, they have delicious smoothie bowls and sandwiches. It's easy to order online and pick up on the go. They do close at 5 p.m. though so if you're looking for something in the evening for the sunset, I suggest Hunger Street Tacos, a Bento Box from BENTO Winter Park, or Charcuterie Board from Ravenous Pig.

You also can never go wrong with a Publix Sub or Charcuterie box and a bottle of wine (alcohol is permitted but be please drink responsibly). And of course, make sure you do not leave any trash or litter behind.

Due to its natural beauty, Kraft Azalea Garden is a favorite spot for photographers, especially for engagement and wedding photoshoots. However, it's essential to check local regulations regarding photography permits and event bookings, and make sure to respect the events that are scheduled there – no one wants a wedding crasher.

Small weddings of 20 people or so are permitted and you can contact the number on the website to reserve.

Kraft Azalea Garden 1365 Alabama Drive, Winter Park, FL 32789

Parking is very limited, try to visit during a weekday or early morning.

The park is open daily 8 a.m. until dusk.

Double Date: Orlando Azalea Season Parks and Nearby Eats

One of the best times of year is upon us in Central Florida. Strawberries and citrus fruits are in season, the weather is ideal for exploring the outdoors, and, it’s azalea season! These flamboy...

One of the best times of year is upon us in Central Florida. Strawberries and citrus fruits are in season, the weather is ideal for exploring the outdoors, and, it’s azalea season! These flamboyant flowers bloom in a variety of shades like coral, fuchsia and violet. Now through the end of February is the perfect time to plan a romantic stroll through a garden or a picnic in a park.

When you find yourself in a park or garden with an abundance of these flowers you’ll feel enveloped by the colors. And we’ve got some perfectly paired date ideas so you can enjoy this season together.

Beautiful Orlando Parks for Azalea Season

You can jump over to our list of the best parks in Orlando, any time of year!

A popular Orlando suburb, Maitland is sometimes overlooked for date potential. During azalea season my personal favorite park is Jim Houser Azalea Garden. It is packed with azaleas along winding pathways with plentiful places to sit and reflect. Picnic tables invite you to grab lunch or an early dinner nearby.

There’s also a covered bridge just a few steps away.

For a bite to eat, Kappy's Subs is just down the road, or try Houndstooth Kitchen and Eatery at Maitland City Centre – a mixed used development with excellent eateries and a few shops.

For a classic, albeit indulgent lunch, go with Kappy’s. The roadside spot has been serving up subs since the 1960’s. They are known for their cheesesteaks, including ones served Kappy’s style which is chopped ground beef. Grad a few subs to-go for a messy but fun picnic in the park. They’re open for breakfast too if you prefer a morning date.

Alternatively, Houndstooth is a unch spot with healthful options. Bring along Fido and sit outside or pack up your food to-go for a flavorful lunch in the park.

Alternatively, Big Tree Park in Sanford is a great idea if you want a quick dose of pretty azaleas. And a stroll down a wooded boardwalk.

As the name of the park implies, the bright and brilliant azalea flower is the focal point of Dickson Azalea Park during the azalea season, generally through the mid-March. This beautiful park provides peaceful moments in the middle of an urban neighborhood.

You and your sweetheart will be treated to pops of color all around.

Just a few blocks away at the edge of downtown Orlando lies The Milk District. There are plentiful restaurants, bakeries, and a few breweries waiting to be enjoyed here.

Grab some food to go and have a picnic in the park. Sandwiches from Bad As’s Sandwiches are sure to satisfy or pick up something sweet from Se7en Bites.

Dickson Azalea Park is not too far from the Thornton Park District so there is an opportunity to explore this beloved neighborhood too. Consider starting your date with brunch at Maxine's on Shine as an alternate idea.

One of Orlando’s poshest streets, Park Avenue, is home to charming parks, gardens and lovely cafes. Nearby is Kraft Azalea Garden, a popular spot for outdoor weddings that is beautiful any time of year.

The allure of this park is elevated during azalea season. Stroll through the winding pathway as the brilliant flowers bloom around you, and head to the sparkling lake. This park radiates romance.

While you're in a romantic mood, dine at one of the many amazing Park Avenue restaurants.

Important note: Parking can be tough here, so try to get here early or visit during the week.

Tucked down a neighborhood street in Winter Park is Mead Botanical Garden. You'll find much more than azaleas here, but of course, visiting during this season does enhance the already pretty scenery.

Enjoy a stroll through the butterfly garden, and savor the peace and quiet on the lovely front porch of the park's welcome center. Bring bikes to hit the paved trail, which exits the park, guides you through residential streets (a portion of this path is on the road), links up to the Orlando Urban Trail, and leads you toward the Mills 50 District.

Mills 50 is one of the most creative and special neighborhoods in Central Florida. Named for the intersection of Mills Avenue and Colonial Drive (State Road 50), it's in this district that you'll find an abundance of eateries and shops, many decorated with fascinating murals.

While you're in the area you have to stop at one, if not more, of the many awesome restaurants in Mills 50. My favorite casual spot is King Bao. No one executes the tender airiness of bao better than King Bao, in my opinion. And the flavorful combination of ingredients and toppings they come up with is mind-blowing. Follow our Guac and Graffiti Itinerary for another option.

When you think of impressive Central Florida gardens, it is hard not to think of Bok Tower Gardens. One of Florida's oldest and most loved attractions, visiting Bok Tower Gardens is akin to entering a fairy tale garden, the setting for countless stories.

Late winter and early spring are some of the best times to visit because so many flowers are in bloom.

There is a charming cafe in the grounds that offers a lovely setting to dine, or you can package up your meal and enjoy it in the park itself.

If you're looking for a day trip adventure, consider driving up to Ravine Gardens State Park. This park features a 1.8-mile drive down the ravine itself, and is known for azaleas surrounding much of the pathway.

February is the best time to plan a visit if you're coming for the azaleas. Ravine Gardens State Park is in Palatka, which is just north of Ocala.

While you're in the area consider booking a horse drawn carriage with Horse Country Carriage Co. Ocala also has a charming historic downtown for wandering and strolling. Check out our day trip guide to Ocala for a bevy of activities and eateries to pair with your state park visit. You could even make it a rustic getaway at Enchanted Oaks Farm.

Feature image by Stephanie Patterson

East Orlando neighborhood Azalea Park is overrun with rabbits

The population is rapidly growing all over Orlando, so it's no surprise to see a new family or two on your block. But Azalea Park residents are dealing with a completely different type of population boom: The neighborhood is chock-full of rabbits.There are about 50 bunnies living in this Orange County neighborhood, and that number is growing."What likely happened in a situation like this is someone dumped maybe a couple of rabbits, but their gestation period is 20 to 30 days to give birth, so very, very quickly you are goi...

The population is rapidly growing all over Orlando, so it's no surprise to see a new family or two on your block. But Azalea Park residents are dealing with a completely different type of population boom: The neighborhood is chock-full of rabbits.

There are about 50 bunnies living in this Orange County neighborhood, and that number is growing.

"What likely happened in a situation like this is someone dumped maybe a couple of rabbits, but their gestation period is 20 to 30 days to give birth, so very, very quickly you are going to see those numbers increase," said Alicia Branoff, adoption and foster coordinator of Orlando Rabbit Care & Adoptions, in an interview with WESH.

Orlando Rabbit Care & Adoptions are a nonprofit organization that dedicates their time to educating, caring, and rescuing house rabbits. They are trying their very best to rescue all these bunnies and care for them until they can find a home. In 2021, the organization rescued 575 rabbits, and just in the first two months of 2022, they rescued 130 rabbits.

"I came in person, when I was driving down the blocks of the street, there were bunnies everywhere. In every yard ... it's just a sad situation for the community because these people have to come outside and see animals that need rescue, and no one can do anything about it at this point," said Stephanie Gallino, an Orlando Rabbit Care volunteer, in an interview with Click Orlando.

Many area rabbit rescues are at full capacity and Orlando Rabbit Care already has 80 rabbits. Taking these rabbits in might prevent them from taking in more for the rest of the year. Petco and PetSmart no longer sell rabbits, nor can they take them in.

"We would have to come in and get all of the rabbits or none. We can't just pull three or four rabbits at a time if we have three or four openings and then come back in two or four weeks and start getting more. Because, like I said, with them reproducing so quickly we would never get ahead of that number," said Branoff.

Domestic bunnies are not like wild rabbits. Wild rabbits know how to escape from predators and know where they can dig a burrow, while domestic bunnies need more attention and special care.

They need donations, as some of the supplies needed are expensive. Getting the bunnies ready for adoption can come to $7,500, including flea meds, spay/neuter, vaccinations, and any other medical attention they may seek.

"We need volunteers. We need money donations. The biggest thing we need is a climate-controlled location to put all of these rabbits," Branoff states.

For more information on how to help foster and rescue these rabbits visit the Orlando Rabbit Care & Adoptions' Facebook page.

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Orlando Pilot Project Aims to Break Cycle of Urban Poverty

ORLANDO, Fla. — Several Central Florida nonprofits are teaming up to tackle the challenge of urban poverty, starting with a Hispanic community in the Azalea Park neighborhood.It’s called the Azalea Park Project.“Azalea Park has been independently identified by a variety of universities as a landing point for new migrants, Puerto Ricans, Venezuelans, Colombians, you name it,” Father Jose Ro...

ORLANDO, Fla. — Several Central Florida nonprofits are teaming up to tackle the challenge of urban poverty, starting with a Hispanic community in the Azalea Park neighborhood.

It’s called the Azalea Park Project.

“Azalea Park has been independently identified by a variety of universities as a landing point for new migrants, Puerto Ricans, Venezuelans, Colombians, you name it,” Father Jose Rodriguez from the Iglesia Episcopal Jesus de Nazaret. “We want to develop this community and break the cycle of persistent urban poverty in our community.”

Sami Haiman-Marrero came up with the idea for the project. Her nonprofit, SOS by Urbander, which helps recent arrivals from Latin countries in Central Florida, will implement the program.

Haiman-Marrero teamed up with several nonprofits for the project.

“What we’re looking is to bring it right there in the community, collaborate with other organizations, so each one can play a critical role and we can prove that within one year, these families can move to social mobility,” Haiman-Marrero said.

They will use eight key resources to find a solution for urban poverty:

Those key areas were chosen based on a study by FSU professor Dr. Howard Rodriguez-Mori. He has researched migration to Florida by families from Latin countries for more than 20 years.

Up to 15 families were chosen to take part in the pilot program, including Carmen Santiago's. She said she's had to move from two homes in the past three years. Hurricane Maria destroyed one, and the other became too expensive for her to afford.

“I felt disillusioned,” Santiago said. “I thought, 'Is this what God had planned for me?' "

She said it was painful for her to admit she was one of several people stuck in urban poverty, and even harder for her to tell her children.

“My youngest cried to me, 'Mom, I don’t want to leave.’ But we couldn’t afford the rent,” Santiago said.

The families chosen needed to meet certain criteria such as living below the poverty line, educated, have children living at home, and other reasons.

“I would love to improve my English and learn how to better manage my finances,” Santiago said.

The initial phase of the pilot program begins next year. Haiman-Marrero said if the program succeeds, the plan is to implement it in other urban communities. She said she would need funding to do that.

Abandoned Pet Bunnies Overrunning Florida Neighborhood: 'They're Everywhere You Look'

At least 50 domestic bunnies are hopping around Azalea Park near Orlando after an unknown individual dumped three pet rabbits in the Florida neighborhood in NovemberDozens of domestic bunnies residing in a Florida neighborhood are living up to their reputation by breeding like, well, rabbits — so fast that they have started overrunning the area and are popping up "everywhere."The wave of rabbits started in November when an unknown individual released three unwanted pet bunnies in the Azalea Park area near downto...

At least 50 domestic bunnies are hopping around Azalea Park near Orlando after an unknown individual dumped three pet rabbits in the Florida neighborhood in November

Dozens of domestic bunnies residing in a Florida neighborhood are living up to their reputation by breeding like, well, rabbits — so fast that they have started overrunning the area and are popping up "everywhere."

The wave of rabbits started in November when an unknown individual released three unwanted pet bunnies in the Azalea Park area near downtown Orlando. Then nature took over, according to Sue Chairvolotti, the adoption coordinator at Orlando Rabbit Care and Adoptions.

"They dug their way out of the backyard, and the rest is history," she tells PEOPLE.

There are now about 50 rabbits of varying breeds — Chinchillas, Havanas, English spots, ruby-eyed whites — nibbling on grass and procreating throughout the Azalea Park area, Chairvolotti says.

A rabbit can produce 1-14 babies every 30 days or so and can get pregnant again the day she gives birth. According to Dana Krempels — a senior lecturer at the University of Miami's Biology department — just a single pair of rabbits can spawn almost 4 million offspring in four years.

Bunnies As 'Comfort Animals': Meet the 16-Year-Old Boy Training Rabbits At His Island Sanctuary

At Azalea Park, the numbers are starting to add up. "When you're first coming down the block, you'll see little ears coming out of the grass," says Stephanie Gal'lino, one of the rescue group's volunteers.

"They're in yards, under sheds, next to cars, running down the street," Gal'lino tells PEOPLE. "They're everywhere you look."

The ever-growing group of rabbits is domestic and not wild, so they don't know how to fend for themselves and are falling victim to lice, ear mites, botflies, teeth overgrowth, and the danger of getting run over by cars, Chairvolotti says.

"They do not have survival skills like a wild rabbit," she adds. "Leaving them out there is kind of cruel … a lot of them are going to die, and not in a very good way."

Neighbors have complained that the horde is "getting in the way of their everyday life," demolishing their vegetable gardens, spooking their dogs, and causing disturbances with people who want to eat the bunnies or feed them to their snakes, Gal'lino says.

A Friendly Reminder That Adorable Bunnies Are Pets for Life (Not Just for Easter)

The rescue group, which is already overcapacity, is now pleading with the community to take in the rabbits as fosters until they can be treated and adopted.

Help is needed quickly, and en masse, she says.

"Wrangling rabbits isn't easy," Chairvolotti says. "Taking two or three isn't really helpful because there are four or five more in the backyard that are pregnant, so it's like treading water."

In addition to foster homes and monetary donations, the organization also hopes someone in the community will donate a large facility to house all the animals temporarily.

Fostering is one way to see if full-time ownership is a good idea, animal advocates say, but especially at this time of year, they warn against buying a rabbit on impulse.

Rabbit Named Cookie — Who Loves to Skateboard — Brings 'Smiles' to Children's Hospital Patients

Every year around Easter,bunnies are brought home but then quickly abandoned outside or returned to the shelter after the spring season ends, forcing shelters to euthanize rabbits in large numbers, per Reuters.

California banned the sale of rabbits and all other commercially bred domestic pets in 2019 to cut down on such whim adoptions, and New York is considering similar legislation.

The ASPCA tells PEOPLE that some cities also have local bans on the retail sale of rabbits, including Boston, Chicago, and New York City.


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