For Immediate Release
December 4, 2006
Contact: Donald Sico 609-351-3591 or Ann McDonald 609-393-4931
Trenton – More than 100 additional New Jersey mayors pledged their support to the Mayors Wellness Campaign in November, bringing the total number to 173 and extending the active living and health lifestyle effort to nearly one-third of the entire state. Many mayors pledged their support at the New Jersey State League of Municipalities Conference in Atlantic City November 15-17, including some of the state’s largest cities such as Asbury Park, Camden, East Orange, Elizabeth, Hoboken, Salem and Woodbridge.
“Our first year goal was to have one in every 10 towns, or 56, participating,” said Ann McDonald, Project Manager for the MWC. “We have more than tripled that number and extended our reach into every county in the state.”
The Mayors Wellness Campaign is an innovative partnership designed to equip mayors and other key leaders with the tools to develop and implement active-living initiatives in their communities. The MWC kicked off its campaign at the New Jersey State League of Municipalities annual conference in Atlantic City in November of 2005.
“We are already working to assist mayors and local leaders implement programs that will help their citizens become more active and healthy,” said McDonald. “I’m incredibly excited about the interest generated by our new program and look forward to signing up even more municipalities in the coming weeks and months as they learn of our effort.”
The MWC supports mayors as champions of community health. The goal is to increase opportunities for New Jersey residents to participate in daily physical activity with a long-term goal of reducing health care costs secondary to obesity. Through public-private partnerships, the MWC provides structure and resources for healthy community initiatives. By encouraging mayors to play a leadership role in supporting local opportunities for active, healthy lifestyles, the intent of the MWC is to improve health and make New Jersey a national leader in community-based health interventions.
This spring, each of the 566 mayors in New Jersey’s municipalities were mailed the MWC “Toolbox,” a manual designed to guide them through the implementation of wellness programs in their communities. Broken down into four major sections – Youth in Motion; Employees in Motion; Seniors in Motion; and Communities in Motion – the Toolbox outlines programs that can be directly used in every community in New Jersey.
The MWC is an initiative of the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute (www.njhcqi.org) in partnership with the New Jersey State League of Municipalities (www.njslom.org). Major funding has been provided by Aetna and BeneCard. Additional funding has been provided by the New Jersey Department of Transportation, St. Francis Hospital, Robert Wood Johnson Hospital – Hamilton, Johnson & Johnson, Pennoni Associates, Pfizer and Bayville Holdings, LLC. The Voorhees Transportation Center at Rutgers University, the Regional Plan Association and the Ramapo College Nursing Program were instrumental in the research and development of the MWC during its initial stages.
The municipalities currently supporting the MWC are: Absecon; Alexandria; Alpine; Asbury Park; Atlantic Highlands; Barrington; Bass River; Bellmawr; Berkeley; Berlin; Bernards; Blairstown; Bloomfield; Bloomingdale; Bogota; Boonton; Branchburg; Butler; Califon; Cape May; Cape May Point; Camden; Carneys Point; Borough of Chester; Chester Township; Clementon; Clifton; Closter; Denville; Dumont; East Hanover; East Orange; East Windsor; Eastampton; Edgewater; Elizabeth; Elmer; Evesham; Fairfield; Fairlawn; Flemington; Franklin; Franklin (Pittstown); Frelinghuysen; Frenchtown; Garfield; Garwood; Gibbsboro; Glassboro; Glen Gardner; Glen Ridge; Gloucester Twp.; Green Brook Twp.; Greenwich (Warren Co.); Greenwich (Gloucester Co.); Guttenberg; Hackettstown; Hampton (Newton); Hamilton (Mercer Co.); Hardwick; Hawthorne; Highland Park; Hightstown; Hillsborough; Hoboken; Holmdel; Hope; Hopewell Borough; Jackson; Jamesburg; Jefferson; Keansburg; Kenilworth; Keyport; Kinnelon; Lake Como; Lambertville; Lawrence; Lebanon Borough; Little Ferry; Little Egg Harbor; Long Beach; Long Branch; Lumberton; Madison; Manalapan; Manchester; Manville; Marlboro; Medford; Metuchen; Middle Twp.; Millburn; Mine Hill; Montgomery; Montvale; Moonachie; Moorestown; Morris; Mullica; National Park; Neptune City; New Milford; Newton; North Bergen; North Plainfield; Northfield; Nutley; Ocean (Waretown); Ocean (Oakhurst); Ocean Gate; Old Tappan; Oldman; Oradell; Parsipanny (Troy Hills); Paulsboro; Peapack-Gladstone; Pequannock; Phillipsburg; Pine Beach; Pine Hill; Pitman; Point Pleasant Beach; Pompton Lakes; Randolph; Ridgefield; Ringwood; River Edge; River Vale; Rochelle Park; Rockaway; Rockleigh; Roseland; Roselle Park; Runnemede; Rutherford; Saddle Brook; Salem; Seaside Park; Somerville; South Plainfield; South River; South Toms River; Spring Lake; Spring Lake Heights; Stone Harbor; Stratford; Summit; Sussex; Tabernacle; Tewksbury; Totowa; Union Township (Union Co.); Union Township (Hunterdon Co.); Upper Saddle River; Wanaque; Washington (Long Valley); Washington Twp.; Washington Borough; Watchung; Waterford; Wayne; West Deptford; West Milford; West Windsor; Weymouth; Wharton; Wildwood; Wildwood Crest; Willingboro; Woodbine; Woodbridge; and Woolwich.