2005-06 School Year at Trenton Central High School
A gym-alternative program for sophomore girls
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UMDNJ School of Health Professionals, Dietetic Internship Program, Director Denise Langevin, MS, RD; Coordinator Geraldine McKay, M Ed, RD; and dietetic interns.
Jim Grieve, Perishable Foods Manager, and the entire Wegmans staff at West Windsor at Nassau Park Boulevard
Kathleen and John Ashton; Bonnie and Walt Arkus; Miss Stacy.
120 students, three certified fitness instructors: head teacher Constance Kelley, Lenora Collarusso and Linda Daly
31 students received special acheivement awards and were selected to serve as PEER LEADERS for the coming year
25 juniors received special recognition with an award for serving as PEER LEADERS
A donation from the Bryce Thompsen Foundation allowed WHF to purchase 56 yoga physio balls so that students could continue their fitness routine during the summer months.
A grant from the Heart Truth allowed WHF to purchase a pedometer, Heart Truth materials and and aprons with a Teen Esteem health message: "Eat Right, Live Well, Take Care of Your Heart"
The fitness program was further refined and the circuit routine more varied. In response to students' requests, an exercise bike and boxing bag were added.
Registered dietitian Diane Barrevecchio was brought on board to meet with the girls every three weeks for hands-on food-science nutrition and to coordinate Shopping for a Healthy Heart at WEGMANS.
WHF hosted a special Parents' Night with open house. The parents were introduced to the Teen Esteem program and given suggestions on ways they could help their daughters become more fit and healthy. Many parents took advantage of the free blood pressure screening offered by WHF. Light fare was served, consisting of favorite recipes from Teen Esteem.
Rutgers University-Camden research team completed its second year of data collection. The results have been remarkably positive and are due for release in August 2006.
The school drop-out rate at Trenton Central High School is 60%. The Teen Esteem participants' school drop-out rate is zero.
New protocols have been established for identifying at-risk youth, in conjunction with the nursing department and the board of education.
The Teen Esteem program was featured at an international conference on gender medicine in Berlin, Germany February 4, 2006, as a gender-specific approach to teen girls' health and wellness.
The Horizon Foundation of New Jersey awarded a $15,000 grant
to the WHF Teen Esteem Health and Fitness Program at Trenton Central High School.
The grant supported the cost of equipment and related program expenses.
Teen Esteem Health and Fitness is a health intervention to reduce cardiovascular risk in vulnerable
teen girls. This gym-alternative class is
administered collaboratively with Rutgers University-Camden, the UMDNJ School of Health Related
Professionals Dietitic Internship Program, WHF, Trenton Central High School and Trenton BOE. The program consists of
circuit training with a personal fitness trainer on Mondays, Health on Tuesdays,
free weights with a personal fitness trainer on Wednesdays, and hands-on nutrition
in the Teen Esteem kitchen with
a registered dietitian every third Thursday and Friday.
Teen Esteem has found success in creating a customized workout routine and nutrition program, combined with a school mandated health curriculum. Funding permitted, the Women's Heart Foundation will be expanding the program by offering participation to the adult members and staff within the school community after regular school hours.
Teen Esteem is rich in social capital and serves as a community development project with inherent positive values to nurture and enrich adolescent girls in a way that will better enable them to become strong, productive and contributing members of society. As a gym-alternative, Teen Esteem reaches one hundred and twenty students on a daily basis. These disadvantaged youth are at higher risk for early heart disease and diabetes. Adolescence is a critical period of transition for the formation of health-promoting behaviors. That's why the Women's Heart Foundation has partnered with the Rutgers University-Camden to measure the synergistic effect of Teen Esteem as a health intervention and is tracking indicators of metabolic syndrome, health behaviors and health attitudes.
"We are thrilled to be able to make a difference in the lives of teen girls at Trenton Central High School." said Bonnie Arkus, WHF executive director. "The grant provided us with the resources we needed to continue the program. It teaches the students life skills and so much more. The Women's Heart Foundation is deeply grateful to The Horizon Foundation of New Jersey for their support".
The Horizon Foundation of New Jersey supports charitable organizations that promote health, education, and the arts throughout New Jersey. More information about the Foundation can be found at www.horizonblue.com/foundation.
The mission of the Women's Heart Foundation is to improve survival and quality of life and is the only charity that designs and implements free wellness programs for women. It has received state, national and international recognititions for its successful programming, reaching out to thousands of women annually with screenings and lifestyle counseling.
The Women's Heart Foundation is headquartered in Trenton, New Jersey. Teen Esteem will be entering its third year of teen programming in September 2006, and plans to expand operations by offering the program to other inner-city schools. Founded in 1992, The WHF seeks to define and implement wellness and prevention programs and institutionalize gender-specific evidence-based care to save lives. For more information about the Women's Heart Foundation, visit www.womensheart.org, or call (609)771-9600.
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