Image description Office of Nutrition & Fitness Newsletter
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Image description Image description February 2012
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ShapingNJ Welcomes New Partners

  • Advocates for Children of NJ
    Advocates for Children of NJ seeks to highlight the needs of children in New Jersey by educating and engaging the public and state policy makers.

  • Camden County Department of Health and Human Services
    Camden County Department of Health and Human Services seeks to improve health and wellness for Camden County residents. Services include a mobile screening program, county-wide assessments and planning, family planning, immunizations, and many more.

  • Center for Communication and Health Issues
    Located in Rutgers School of Communication and Information, the Center for Communication and Health Issues (CHI) is a partnership between communication, health education, and substance abuse professionals that collects data and introduces prevention programs around health issues.

  • Employers Association of New Jersey
    The Employers Association of New Jersey (EANJ) is a membership-based non-profit association with over 1,000 members in New Jersey. It helps employers make employment decisions by providing education, informed discussion and training.

  • HomeFront
    HomeFront seeks to end homelessness and help families become self-sufficient by supplying emergency food and housing, and conducting skill-building workshops, tutoring and other services.

  • J. Sullivan Associates
    J. Sullivan Associates provides non-profit consulting services ranging from state-level advocacy to strategic planning and management for organizations.

  • SurroundHealth
    SurroundHealth is an online community of health professionals from a variety of backgrounds. Members share knowledge, best practices, resources, and the latest news and events.

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    Note from the Director:
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    Last month the Office of Nutrition and Fitness spent the better part of a day at the Rutgers Food Innovation Center in Bridgeton, NJ.  I have to thank Diane Holtaway, Associate Director, Client Services for a most informative tour of the facility.  The Rutgers Food Innovation Center is a unique business incubation and economic development accelerator program, which provides business and technology expertise to startup and established food companies in the mid-Atlantic region, and utilizes its outreach capacity to reach food and agribusinesses throughout the world. 

       

    Earlier this month I had the distinct pleasure of visiting the Newark Museum's "Generation Fit: Steps to a Healthier Lifestyle Exhibit".  A big thank you to Ismael Calderon for a most informative and fun (really!) tour.  This exhibit is interactive, kid-friendly, wildly appealing and high-tech.  Take your kids, your class, or just yourself - it is a great way to spend an afternoon!

    Finally, I must share one more noteworthy experience:  I attended George Street Playhouse's premier production of "Austin the Unstoppable" - a wonderful musical addressing obesity and chronic disease (see more below under partner news) and participated in a panel following the play.  Commissioner Mary E. O'Dowd provided welcoming remarks to a crowd of teachers, health providers and 4th grade students from one of the local schools.  I highly recommend this production for kids and adults alike.

    I hope to see many of you at our annual partnership meeting on June 1st - see "events" below for more information.

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    Office of Nutrition and Fitness (ONF) and ShapingNJ News:
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    Child Care

    • The child care center regulations are on the move! The Office of Licensing in the Department of Children & Families and Governor's Office reviewed the proposed regulations.
    • The proposed amendments to the Manual of Requirements for Child Care Centers (N.J.A.C. 10:122) will be posted in the February 21st NJ Register for public review and comment until April 21, 2012.
    • Five counties completed the training project being implemented in New Jersey child care centers through the NJ Association of Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies (NJACCRRA). We are working with the remaining 16 counties to complete the project and evaluating the centers on their progress.

     Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative

    • We are still awaiting the results of a December inspection at one of our 10 grantee hospitals by Baby-Friendly USA.
    • Two more of our grantee hospitals will be inspected by Baby-Friendly USA on February 21-24, 2012. To help them prepare, the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative team, led by the NJ American Academy of Pediatrics/Pediatric Council on Research and Education (NJ AAP/PCORE) and Dr. Lori Feldman-Winter, will conduct mock inspections before Baby-Friendly USA arrives.
    • At the end of January, a total of 10 Educating Professionals in the Community-Breastfeeding Education, Support and Training (EPIC BEST) modules were completed, reaching over 85 participants at pediatric and OB-GYN offices statewide.

     Community Pilot Project: Local Health Environmental and Policy Change

    • The final meeting of the ShapingNJ community pilot project will be on March 29, 2012. The meeting will unite all ten sites (funded through the Office of Nutrition & Fitness, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Partners for Health, and Walgreens) and will share lessons learned and success stories.
    • ONF and the NJ Health Officers Association are developing a summary of the accomplishments and lessons learned from the community pilot project. Stay tuned to learn more about the creative way we will be highlighting these pilots!

     Work Site

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    ShapingNJ Partner News:
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    George Street Playhouse Develops and Premiers Austin the Unstoppable
    ShapingNJ partner George Street Playhouse developed and recently premiered a new musical comedy designed for students that addresses the benefits of a healthy diet and exercise. The premier was part of a day-long conference - attended by several ShapingNJ partners - about childhood obesity and wellness.

    Joetta Clark Diggs Visits New Jersey Schools
    Four-time Olympic track star Joetta Clark Diggs visited Halsted Middle School in Newton, NJ and will visit four additional schools that participate in the NJ Department of Education's Coordinated School Health Program: Healthy Schools Grow Healthy Kids.

    NJ Departments of Education and Agriculture Partner to Support School Breakfast
    The Commissioners of the NJ Departments of Education and Agriculture jointly wrote a letter explaining the School Breakfast Program's importance in students' health and academic achievement and encouraging New Jersey schools to participate in the School Breakfast Program.

    In the news...
    Lawrence to create 'green map' of community

     

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    New Jersey News:
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    Municipalities Allowed to Use Unneeded Public Land for Farming
    Governor Christie signed into law a measure that amended existing law to allow all municipalities to sell and lease unneeded public property for "urban" farming and gardening purposes.

    Governor Christie Conditionally Vetoes Mobile Market Legislation
    Assembly Bill 3688/Senate Bill 2728 called for the State Department of Agriculture to develop a network of mobile markets that would travel to underserved communities to sell fresh produce and educate the community about healthy eating. The conditions of the veto call for establishing a pilot project that municipalities can voluntarily participate in as opposed to mandating the project statewide.

    In the news...
    Five Grants Awarded In New Jersey to Fight Childhood Obesity 
    NJ Transit Widening Seats on New Double Decker Train Cars
    More Cash Coming to Help Eliminate New Jersey's Food Deserts
    Somerset Restaurants Promote Healthy Dining with ‘Take ½ To Go' Initiative

     

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    National News:
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    School Nutrition Standards Updated for the First Time in 15 Years
    The United States Department of Agriculture's (USDA) recently released the new and improved nutrition standards for school lunches. The new standards ensure students are offered fruits and vegetables every day of the week, increase offerings of whole grain-rich foods, offer only fat-free or low-fat milk varieties and ensure students are getting proper portion sizes.

    HBO Launches Weight of the Nation: A Public Health Campaign Series about Obesity
    Developed in association with the nation's leading health organizations, HBO is debuting a multipart, multiplatform series about the national obesity epidemic on May 14-16, 2012. The Weight of the Nation includes four documentary films, a three-part HBO Family series, 14 bonus shorts, a social media campaign, a book published by St. Martin's Press and a nationwide community-based outreach campaign to support the initiative.

    National Survey Shows Obesity Rates Stalling
    Results from the most recent National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey - a national-level survey that estimates obesity based on measured weight and height - found that overall obesity rates remained about the same: 35.7% of adults and almost 17% of youth were obese in 2009-2010.

    New Study Connects Delaware Students' Fitness, School Performance
    A study conducted by the Delaware Department of Education and Nemours Health and Prevention Services found that Delaware students who are physically fit are more likely to perform well and to behave well in school - regardless of their gender, race, family income or school district. These findings echo those from a similar study in Texas and several research studies.

     

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    Events:
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    February 24-25, 2012
    It Takes a Village: Collaborations in Good Food and School Garden Education
    Atlantic Cape Community College
    Mays Landing, NJ
    The New Jersey Farm to School Network in collaboration with The AtlantiCare Foundation will be hosting this statewide conference. Topics include value added food in school, results of the NJ Farm to School survey, and school garden program collaborations. Click here to register.

    February 28, 2012
    The "How To" of School Wellness Councils: Developing and Sustaining Your Team
    3:00-4:15pm
    The ShapingNJ School workgroup is presenting this webinar for school wellness team members. This webinar will use a panel of school wellness team members to share their knowledge on the "how to." Discussions will address: identifying key members for your council, getting started, the role of the councils and strategies to maintain momentum.

    March 4-6, 2012
    93rd Annual New Jersey Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (NJAHPERD) Convention

    Ocean Place Resort & Spa
    Long Branch, NJ
    NJAHPERD's annual convention is the premiere professional development for health and physical education teachers and future professionals.  ShapingNJ partners may register for a booth at a discounted fee and attend the Monday keynote session, Action Based Learning: How Brain Research Links Movement to Learning, given by Jean Blaydes.  For more information, please click here.

    March 9, 2012
    New Jersey Future Redevelopment Forum

    8:00am-4:00pm
    Hyatt Hotel and Conference Center
    New Brunswick, NJ

    ShapingNJ is pleased to be a partner of New Jersey Future's annual Redevelopment Forum. The forum is a one-day educational symposium about ways to preserve our open land by focusing the state's growth in areas already served by roads, municipal services, schools, transit and employment.  

    March 23, 2012
    4th Leaders' Academy for Healthy Community Development
    8:00am-1:00pm
    Robert Wood Johnson Hamilton Center for Health & Wellness
    Mercerville, NJ
    The New Jersey Council on Physical Fitness and Sports and the Office of Nutrition & Fitness, Department of Health & Senior Services invite community collaboration teams to a skill building workshop that will enable them to apply for competitive mini grant funding to implement evidence based healthy community food or physical activity initiatives. Click here for registration information.

    June 1, 2012
    2012 Annual ShapingNJ Partnership Meeting: Sustainability Through Strategic Partnerships
    9:00am-3:30pm
    Robert Wood Johnson Hamilton Center for Health & Wellness
    Mercerville, NJ
    Please join us for ShapingNJ's annual partnership meeting. This year we will focus on sustaining the work by highlighting accomplishments and providing tools and resources to further the effort.

     

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