The first quarter of 2018 has been busy at HomeFront Family Campus in Ewing, NJ. After several planning sessions we have started to implement fitness and nutrition initiatives as part of an overall wellness program for our residents and their children.
Our campus has three floors; we found that many people were opting for the elevator instead of the stairs. To encourage everyone to start thinking about adding movement to their day, we posted motivational signs throughout the halls and outside the elevator. We included information like how many steps there are in a hallway or how many calories they would burn by taking the stairs. We also included several nutrition-focused posters which encouraged residents and employees to eat more vegetables and less sugar, and challenged them to try a new physical activity with their children (squats, jumping jacks, etc.).
Additionally, we partnered with a non-profit that collects, cleans, and redistributes fitness trackers. We were able to give out 50 FitBit Ones to residents participating in our Friday Fitness classes or our new weekly walking group. We created an incentive program around the use of these FitBits to encourage each user to be more active.
Lastly, we started “We Love You Wednesdays”. Each Wednesday healthier food options are served at our on-campus cafeteria, including a full salad bar, more vegetable options, whole grain options, etc. The salad bar has been a huge success and we are hoping to begin offering it on other days of the week.
We continue working to make a strong climate of wellness for all that spend time at our campus – residents, employees, and volunteers. We are currently evaluating or planning new activities for the next several months – an outdoor walking path around the campus, nutrition-focused and budget-friendly cooking classes in our Teaching Kitchen, and partnerships with local farms or co-ops to offer even more locally grown vegetables. We are enjoying positive feedback from all involved in these ventures!
About the Grantee
HomeFront’s mission is to end homelessness in Central New Jersey by harnessing the caring, resources and expertise of the community. We lessen the immediate pain of homelessness and help families become self-sufficient
Cohort: Central 1
Funder: New Jersey Department of Health