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10 Easy Ways to Help Schools Create Healthier Environments

September 5, 2017

With millions of children heading back to school, a healthy environment is essential to a successful school year. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the average New Jersey student spends more than six hours a day in school. The healthiest school environments require consistent effort and partnerships with educators, parents, school staff, and community members. The CDC determined that school health programs have positive effects on educational outcomes, health-risk behaviors, and general health outcomes on students – meaning good students are physically and mentally healthy. Here are ten ways to help students have a healthy and productive year in the classroom: Join the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) – Active parent/teacher organizations open the lines of communication and advocate for students. Suggest ways to improve healthy habits at school and in after school programs (think family gym nights or family game nights). Everyone will benefit! Review and update the […]

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Principal Bittner Gets A+ for School Wellness Efforts

September 5, 2017

Carla Bittner, Principal of National Park School, knows that healthy bodies create healthy minds. Over the years, National Park School has become the poster child for making sure students are safe, physically active and fed well so that they can focus on their education. The tiny town of National Park, NJ is approximately one square mile and is surrounded by West Deptford, NJ. The school has 275 students ranging from pre-K to sixth grade. The Road to School Wellness For the past three years, National Park School has received a New Jersey Healthy Communities Network (NJHCN) grant totaling $10,000 per year to implement various school wellness initiatives. “Carla and her team have been very innovative and among the best in implementing healthy sustainable strategies, said Valeria Galarza, senior project manager, Coopers Ferry Partnership and NJHCN Coach. However, their quest to create a healthy school environment started a few years before […]

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Greenwood Ave. Farmers Market Hosts Former Olympian Joetta Clark Diggs

September 5, 2017

New Jersey native and former Olympic athlete Joetta Clark Diggs made a special appearance at Trenton’s Greenwood Ave. Farmers Market on Monday, August 28, 2017. The four-time Olympic competitor led an exercise routine and a water balloon toss at 1:00 pm to kick off the free community event. “It was exciting to have Olympian Joetta Clark Diggs join us for the afternoon to lead activities for the community during Water Fest,” said Chelsea Jackson, Greenwood Ave. Farmers Market manager. Clark Diggs is a four-time Olympic runner and founder of the Joetta Clark Diggs Sports Foundation. She also serves as a spokesperson for the Mayors Wellness Campaign, a program of the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute. Clark Diggs had a successful 24-year career as a competitive 800-meter and 1500-meter runner, winning many collegiate, national, and world championships. Along with her decorated running career, Clark Diggs is a physical health and […]

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Inaugural “I Bike Camden” Event Puts the City and its Premier Cycling Trails in the Spotlight

September 5, 2017

More than 50 cyclists and biking enthusiasts gathered in Cooper’s Poynt Waterfront Park in Camden on August 12, 2017, to participate in the inaugural “I Bike Camden” – a fun, family-friendly bicycle ride and community event showcasing the beauty of the City and its growing network of biking trails. “This unique event showcases the beauty of our city from an entirely new perspective – the seat of a bicycle,” said Camden Mayor Dana L. Redd. “Camden’s beautiful bike trails attract cyclists from all over the region – we are proud these trails can be used to explore and discover, while also encouraging people of all ages to get up and enjoy a healthy, active lifestyle.” The community event kicked off with an easygoing, social 10-mile ride (see map attached) around Camden along the city’s Circuit Trails – Greater Philadelphia’s Regional Trail network and one of America’s largest trails networks that […]

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National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

September 5, 2017

September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month. The good news is that the designation brings attention to the fact that childhood obesity can be prevented. In New Jersey, 31 percent of children are either overweight or obese, placing them at increased risk for type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and other serious health conditions. Reversing the childhood obesity epidemic is a critical strategy for protecting the viability of our health care system. Among experts, there’s universal agreement that health care should focus more on prevention—not just treatment—and obesity prevention is one of the best investments we can make. New Jersey Partnership for Healthy Kids (NJPHK) is working with partners across New Jersey to implement environment and policy changes that support access to affordable healthy foods and increase opportunities for physical activities that help children achieve a healthy weight. Since 2009, NJPHK has expanded its impact to improve the health and well-being […]

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Plainfield Healthy Community Network to Host Free Tasting Event at Isabelita Market

September 5, 2017

Originally posted on tapinto.net By TAPINTO PLAINFIELD STAFF August 14, 2017 at 10:59 PM   PLAINFIELD, NJ – A free healthy food tasting event will take place at Plainfield’s Isabelita Market this Thursday, Aug. 17th, from 2:30 to 4:00 pm, as a part of the New Jersey Healthy Corner Store Initiative.  This initiative connects corner store owners and neighborhood partners with resources to access fruits, vegetables, and other healthy food options. Fresh fruit, yogurt, and Heart Healthy Coupons will be available at Isabelita Market, located at 341 Park Avenue.  This food event is just one in a series that have taken place around the city.  The  goal of the events is simple:  encourage local residents, especially students, to embrace healthy food options, and to switch from high sugar or salty snacks to fresh fruits and vegetables. In late July, EZ Ride, with assistance from Rutgers SNAP-Ed, hosted an event at […]

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OP-ED: THE GARDEN STATE IS FIGHTING THE STATE OF DIABETES

September 5, 2017

Originally published on NJSpotlight.com DARRIN W. ANDERSON AND BILL LOVETT | AUGUST 8, 2017 Diabetes is not just an individual disease; it has municipal-level ramifications, especially where there are fewer opportunities for active living and healthy food access This past week, the New Jersey state Legislature and Gov. Chris Christie took a giant step to curb the impact of an insidious disease. They approved a law that requires Medicaid coverage for diabetes self-management education, training, services, and equipment for patients diagnosed with diabetes, gestational diabetes, and pre-diabetes. As an organization that is committed to improving the health and wellness of the nation, and addressing health equity, we understand the importance of preventing and managing chronic disease. Therefore, we applaud our state policymakers for making this decision on behalf of the 700,000 people in New Jersey living with diabetes and the more than 235,000 who are at risk of developing the […]

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Join the Fun at ¡Vive tu vida! Get Up! Get Moving!® on September 23

September 5, 2017

Live Healthy Vineland is pairing up with the Metropolitan Multicultural Center to hold a one-day fun and fitness event with great activities planned for all to enjoy. ¡Vive tu vida! Get Up! Get Moving!® is the nation’s premier annual family physical activity and healthy lifestyle event for people of all ages and all sizes. This free event will be held at Landis Park, 600 E. Park Avenue in Vineland, from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm on Saturday, September 23—rain or shine. ¡Vive tu vida! Get Up! Get Moving!® promotes Hispanic family physical activity and healthy lifestyles for all. It will feature fun and excitement for the whole family, including sports clinics, and other exercise activities such as volleyball, yoga, Zumba; free health screenings and health education; talent shows; prize drawings; healthy snacks, and a farm market where visitors can purchase fresh produce. Food, music, live entertainment, and giveaways will be […]

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NJPHK Spotlight: Dr. Denise Rodgers

August 2, 2017

Dr. Denise Rodgers believes that “zip code is more important than genetic code” when it comes to individuals’ health outcomes. Since graduating from medical school, Rodgers has been immersed in the health of people who live in the overlooked and underserved zip codes within a city. In a career that combines community health and academia, she has attended patients and taught student health professionals in the Bronx Borough of New York City, in San Francisco, in New Brunswick and most recently in Newark. Her credo is to always serve the best interest of the patient. This guidance came from her mentor, Dr. Marilyn Gaston, the second African American woman to achieve the position of Assistant Surgeon General and rank of Rear Admiral in the US Public Health Service. “Marilyn advised that if I make a decision that is in each patient’s best interest, 90 percent of the time it will […]

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NJTV Spotlights Trenton’s Greenwood Ave. Farmers Market

July 31, 2017

  Trenton’s Greenwood Ave. Farmer’s Market has made its mark on the community and the statewide media. The unique market was recently featured in a special NJTV broadcast, “In Your Neighborhood-Trenton,” a state-wide special broadcast that spotlights issues and efforts that impact communities across the state of New Jersey. The June edition focused on the city of Trenton. On June 19, Lauren Wanko, NJTV news correspondent came to the market and interviewed several customers and staff about the importance of healthy foods and the impact of the market on the community. The resulting four-minute segment provided viewers a detailed look at all the Greenwood Ave. Farmers Market offers to visitors and the local community including: fresh fruits and vegetables, free health screenings, cooking demonstrations, free summer meals for kids, and family activities.   On Thursday, June 29, NJTV hosted a live broadcast of the In Your Neighborhood: Trenton in the Yankee […]

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