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Grantee Blog 2020

Newark Public School Wellness Policy

Ten years ago, Newark Beth Israel Medial Center,  began implementing an obesity prevention program called KidsFit in Newark public schools. The program was taught by a Registered Dietitian and helped students, their families and the school staff improve their health through nutrition and lifestyle changes. KidsFit augments health curricula and helps schools create a healthy school culture. Family fitness events were organized, salad bars were installed upon student request and administrators led by example by participating in health events throughout the school year. As KidsFit expanded to other schools, the district wellness policy helped support the goals of the program. However the Newark Public schools wellness policy was in need of significant updating. In recent years the USDA made significant changes to the requirements of school wellness policies. An upgrade of the Newark Public School wellness policy is needed in order to comply with these federal requirements. Newark Beth Israel’s KidsFit team is working with the Believe in a Healthy Newark Coalition to upgrade district’s wellness policy. Great minds from United Way, NPS Physical education Department, NPS Food & Nutrition Department and the American Heart association are all working together to make the policy changes needed to help schools in Newark create a healthy school culture that will foster healthy lifestyles for the whole school community.

About the Grantee

Newark Beth Israel Medical Center

Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, a part of the RWJBarnabas Health system empowers the community with the tools they need to lead a healthy lifestyle and prevent chronic illness. Wellness Services at Newark Beth Israel include the Beth Greenhouse, weekly farmers market, KidsFit program and Rev.Dr. Ronald B. Christian Community Health and Wellness Center.