Greenwood Ave Farmers Market Opening Day: June 15th

Plans are underway for the June 15th grand opening of a new farmers market in Trenton on Greenwood Avenue, behind the Trenton Transit Center. Norz Hill Farm of Hillsborough and Isles Community Gardens will be produce vendors at the Market.

The Market is sponsored by the NJ Department of Health, the Hunterdon and Mercer Chronic Disease Coalition, the NJ Partnership for Healthy Kids, the Trenton Healthy Food Network and the Trenton YMCA.

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The mission of the Greenwood Ave. Farmers Market is to first and foremost, support local farms and to offer a location for these farms to meet and sell their products to local residents in Trenton and surrounding areas.

OUR TARGET AUDIENCE: Seniors, Youth, Residents, NJ Transit commuters

ITEMS SOLD AT THE MARKET WILL INCLUDE: Jersey Fresh fruits and veggies, baked goods, fresh meats, honey and more

ACTIVITIES AT THE MARKET WILL INCLUDE: Health screenings, Physical Activity, Nutrition Education, Entertainment by local musicians and school groups

LOCATION: 427 Greenwood Ave. Corner of Greenwood Ave. and Hudson Street, behind the Trenton Train station-http://bit.ly/1FlvGkO

WHEN: Mondays from 2:30 PM – 6:30 PM from June 15th – October 26th

WHY: to improve the health and wellbeing of the Trenton community via fresh food access, economic development and placemaking

For more information, email greenwoodavefm@gmail.com.

Trenton’s New Farmers Market to Open June 1st

IMG_0342With funding from the New Jersey Department of Health’s “Shaping Community Pilots” grants and collaborations from the Trenton Healthy Food Network, plans are underway to open a new farmers market on Greenwood Avenue in Trenton, directly behind the Trenton Transit Center on Greenwood Avenue.

The Trenton Healthy Food Network’s Economic Development committee has been working on the creation of the market for months and consists of representatives from many area organizations–the New Jersey Partnership for Healthy Kids-Trenton, the Trenton Area YMCA, Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Mercer County, Isles, Inc, the Henry J. Austin Center, the Crisis Ministry of Princeton and Trenton and the New Jersey Farm to School Network. The effort has support from the Trenton Mayor’s office and administration and the adjacent Trent Center, which houses almost 600 seniors.

The market, which will run on Mondays from 2:30pm to 6:30pm, will offer farm fresh produce, locally prepared foods, music and a place for community groups to access the residents, commuters and businesses that surround the Trenton Train Station.IMG_0341

Local Trenton artists are currently at work creating the logo for the market and plans are underway to create a “walking bus” for the seniors from the nearby Trent Center to visit the market.

Access to fresh produce is an issue in many urban communities and this market will bring much-needed good food to the area, making it available to residents and commuters alike.

Yum to Come!

Big changes are happening in Trenton – salad bars and fresh fruits & veggies are in high demand!

This year, 9 of the 15 elementary schools in the District are applying for the Fresh Fruits and Veggies Grant, which will bring healthier snacks to their students at times other than breakfast and lunch.  While we celebrate the opportunity for our elementary school students we do not want to forget the importance of fresh fruit and veggies for our teenagers! The salad bar that will be installed at Trenton Central High School-West will be the fourth salad bar we’ve provided to the district in two years.  This healthy food movement changing our districts culture for the better – the importance of having healthy food for students to eat, both for their health and their academic performance, is being recognized!

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The New Jersey Partnership for Healthy Kids – Trenton had its very first District Wellness Committee meeting on April 11th.  The Committee aims to pass a District-Wide wellness policy to foster a health-centric culture within Trenton public schools.  To start off, they’ve created a survey that will capture each schools readiness and ability to implement more physical activity and increase the consumption of healthy foods.  This idea took off quickly, and the following Monday, the Committee met with the Family and Community Engagement (FACE) Office to present their idea for the survey, as well as discuss the creation and adoption of a district wellness policy.  It was well-received, and later this week, they will receive feedback on the survey.  The first reading of the proposed District Wellness Policy will be later this month.

Trenton “Springs” into Wellness at Union Baptist Church

New Jersey Partnership for Healthy Kids – Trenton attended the Union Baptist Church (UBC) “Spring into Wellness” Health Fair on Saturday, April 12, 2014.  It featured a panel discussion about how people can be healthy in every aspect of their life, with representatives from the Trenton Health Team, Capital Health, National Marrow Donor Program, Rite Aid, and a New Jersey state licensed psychologist/co-pastor of Grant Chapel A.M.E. Church.  The speakers touched on many topics relevant to our projects focus on physical activity and nutrition.  Union Baptist Church is one of the three faith-based organizations that volunteered to perform walking audits with us last year.  Not only did they participate in the audits, but they also signed a wellness policy for their organization.  We are so proud of UBC for hosting this health fair and making their wellness policy an integral part of the spiritual journey.

One of the panelists at the UBC event was Margaret Creevey, RN, BSN, MSN, AOCN; a gastrointestinal (GI) Cancer Nurse Navigator.  She spoke about colorectal cancer, and the precautions that can be taken to lower our risks of developing these life-threatening illnesses.  She told the audience that an important part of the prevention of GI cancers is, among other things, to maintain a healthy body weight through healthy eating and physical activity.  When asked if creating a more pedestrian-friendly streetscape would help increase physical activity levels, and as a result decrease the risk of colorectal cancer, Creevey said, “If we could have safe places to walk or ride a bike [at least 30 minutes a day], the better off people would be at preventing GI cancer.”
This information couldn’t have been shared with us at a better time – the City of Trenton is currently working on their Bike/Pedestrian plan, which will be incorporated into the new Master Plan.  With the City considering how they can make the streets safer for all travelers, and our soon to come streetscape improvements, Trenton residents will be able to get outside and get active!

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“If we could have safe places to walk or ride a bike [at least 30 minutes a day], the better off people would be at preventing GI cancer.” 

Margaret Creevey, RN, BSN, MSN, AOCN speaking to the attendees of the UBC “Spring into Wellness”  Health Fair, about how they may be able to reduce the risks of colorectal cancer, some of the advice  including maintaining a healthy weight and getting 30 minutes of physical activity per day.

Salad Bars and Safer Streets in Trenton, NJ

The focus of New Jersey Partnership for Healthy Kids – Trenton is to prevent childhood obesity through the implementation of environmental and policy change.  Our leadership team is directed by the Trenton Area YMCA and Isles, Incorporated.We have been working to “make the healthy choice the easy choice” for our youth and their families for over a year, and plan to build upon our successes.

Let’s take a trip back to last year and recap what was accomplished in both the physical activity and nutrition strategies:

Last year, we proposed a physical activity strategy to team up with church congregants and hold walking audits to analyze the City’s streetscape around three public schools in Trenton, to identify possible improvements that could be made to turn the busy, vehicle-centric streets into safe Complete Streets that students and citizens could travel safely.

Below are some photos from those walking audits, where we found LOTS of improvements to be made!

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Overgrown foliage blocks the sidewalk and obstructs the motorist’s vision of pedestrians and vice versa.

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No handicapped-accessible ramp – NOT safe for wheelchairs/power chairs, strollers, etc!

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No designated parking shoulders for vehicles, so vehicles park directly on the sidewalk, obstructing pedestrians and blocking motorist’s view of pedestrians.

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Maybe the scariest find of the walking audits – This telephone pole is split wide enough to fit a head though!

A checklist was created from the walking audits to be fixed.  This year, we plan to fix those items on the checklist.

Also, last year we proposed a healthy nutrition strategy of implementing five wellness policies into active faith-based organizations around Trenton.  As a result, ministries and their congregations would have healthier food choices at church-based events, youth-based activities, child care centers and more.  The policies would also promote physical activity along with healthy nutrition.  We were successful in getting our wellness policies adopted and implemented at most of the activities run by these faith-based organizations.

This year, our healthy nutrition strategy is to install a salad bar into the cafeteria of Trenton Central High School – West Campus.  The salad bar will be stocked and maintained FREE OF CHARGE by the school’s food provider, and will introduce the students to healthier lunch options they haven’t had before.  We have installed salad bars in three (3) other public schools in the area, and have observed much success, so we are very excited to give these healthy options to another school!

We are very thankful to be able to implement our physical activity and nutrition strategies for a second time; stay tuned for updates!