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Grantee Blog

In Just Six Weeks…

By Alyssa Wilds

In just six short weeks lives were transformed and bonds made using the Bible and Faith In Prevention as our guide.

Beginning Tuesday, July 10th, and for five consecutive weeks after, the members of St. John’s Church of the Apostolic Faith (SJC) took a journey towards healthy living together. Each week the participants would gather at 6 pm for prayer… and then the unexpected would happen.

As the program was designed, each session would open up with prayer then a lesson taught by Sister Alyssa Wilds. At the end of the instructional piece, the class would immediately transition to the kitchen where Deacon Denise Richardson would prep the day’s meal, step-by-step.  While the meal’s cooked, the class would assemble for light exercise with Trustee Dawn Hill then move to the fellowship hall for dinner, conversation, and bonding.

Once the sharing began and excitement built, the momentum could not be contained. The number of participants steadily increased as the weeks went on. Members gathered early each Tuesday to share the prior week’s victories and struggles, as well as recipes.  New policies like NO carbonated drinks at church sponsored functions were birthed and instantaneously put into practice. New exercise regimens were adopted. Weights, waistlines, blood pressures, and blood sugars decreased. Carnivores transitioned into vegetarians, pescetarians.  In essence, the church, collectively, wanted to win and win we shall.

The program culminated on Tuesday, August 14th to a crowd of participants with mixed-feelings; happy with all that was learned and sad because the end had been reached. Though Faith in Prevention ended, the impact of the six weeks is just beginning.  Salad Bar Sundays has become “a thing” at SJC. Meal prep and recipe sharing continues to thrust forward. As we move closer towards the remodeling of the kitchen, our hope is to broaden our service base to not only the church community, but the community at large.  We will use what was learned In Just Six Weeks to help transform the minds of the multitude as was done with the few.

In Just Six Weeks… Faith In Prevention helped SJC Ministries lay the foundation to building a healthier congregation and community. The partnership between Camden Coalition and Pastor Bert Wright has proven to be one of necessity and great value.  For this, we will forever be grateful.

NJ Partnership for Healthy Kids supports Camden Coalition’s programming which promotes community-based social support for physical activity. The gatherings described by Alyssa  built bonds that will contribute to ongoing accountability for active living in Camden!

About the Grantee

Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers

Camden Coalition of Healthcare Providers is a non-profit coalition of Camden healthcare providers, community partners, and advocates, committed to elevating the health of patients facing the most complex medical and social challenges. We share a vision of a transformed healthcare system that ensures every individual receives whole-person care rooted in authentic healing relationships.