Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Snapshot

Obesity in Young Is Seen as Falling in Several Cities

Monday, December 10, 2012

School Wellness Weekly, 12.07.2012

Thousands of runners, including students, joined DOE Chancellor Dennis M. Walcott this past Saturday morning for The New York Road Runners’ (NYRR) Jingle Bell Jog.  The proceeds from the four-mile run in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, help support NYRR’s Youth Programs, serving more than 100,000 students in NYC public schools through programs such as Mighty Milers, Young Runners, and the Developmental Track and Field Series.  In addition to providing physical activity programming during and after school hours, the ongoing partnership with NYRR has helped to raise awareness about the importance of physical activity, while helping students learn valuable lessons about endurance, commitment, and enthusiasm for fitness in and out of school.

Opportunities and Recognition

·         Does Your School Need Support on a Health and Wellness Project? On behalf of the Partnership for Healthier New York City, The Fund for Public Health in New York (FPHNY) seeks proposals (click here) from organizations, including schools, to work with Borough Lead Organizations to advance the work of New York City’s Community Transformation Grant. The 30 mini-grants of up to $10,000 will be awarded in February and tasks associated with grant must be completed by 9/30/2013.  The RFP deadline is 12/17 at 3:00 p.m. For more information, contact Liz Nguyen.
·         Employment Opportunity as a Health Education Mentor: The DOE Office of School Wellness Programs (OSWP) needs a qualified educator to join our team.  This new Teacher Assigned position will support middle and high schools in delivering medically accurate, skills-based health instruction, as well as identify and share best comprehensive health education practices. To be eligible for this position, applicants must be current licensed, appointed, and tenured NYC DOE teachers.  Interested individuals may email here.
·         2012 Updated HIV/AIDS Curriculum Available: Check out the OSWP website to learn more about medical updates to this K-12 curriculum. New parent letters and brochures are also available, or request a hard copy of the curriculum. Also, teachers can register for professional development or request an “At Your School” training for 15 or more teachers—for either a refresher for those who have attended the 101 training prior to September 2012, or an HIV 101.
  • Do Your Elementary School Teachers Move-to-Improve? If your school hasn’t signed up for this structured classroom fitness break program, the MTI team just gave you more reasons to be an MTI school. Not only do participating teachers receive a stipend for participating in the MTI workshop, as well as free equipment and materials, but schools that train more than 85% of teachers and schools committing to be MTI host sites can receive additional wellness related goods. Find out more from the fact sheet here, or register here.
·         DOT's Bike to School RFP: All middle and high schools are invited to apply to the Bike to School program, a three year commitment for schools interested in working closely with DOT to designate safe Bike to School routes, implement in-class curriculum and recommend street safety improvements. Click here to apply before the 12/12 deadline.
  • Game On! The Ultimate Wellness Challenge grants: Action for Healthy Kids (AFHK) announces $1,000 grants to support elementary schools, PTAs and SWCs with their wellness initiatives for 2013.  Applications are due 12/14.

Wellness in the News
·         Facebook and Twitter May Help Fight Obesity in Kids (ABC News, 12/7)
Additional Resources
·         Download a copy of Teens in NYC, a wallet-sized guide from NYCDOHMH about free or very low cost sexual health services and clinics that are teen friendly, also available from 311.
·         See the NASPE/AAHPERD draft document of proposed national K-12 PE standards available for comment here.
·         Check out the CDC’s strategy toolkit for involving parents in school health.
·         The CDC has announced changes to the 2012 School Health Index to include: sexual health as a new topic, updates to nutrition questions to reflect the Institute of Medicine’s Nutrition Standards for Foods in Schools, and revised cross cutting questions to be more integrative.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Bronx Health REACH e-blast

 Neighborhood Grants – Deadline December 17th
The Fund for Public Health in New York (The Fund), on behalf of the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) and the Partnership for Healthier New York City, has announced a Request for Proposals (RFP) for community organizations and residents to work with Borough Lead Coalitions to advance the work of NYC’s Community Transformation Grant (CTG).  The Bronx Health REACH Coalition led by the Institute for Family Health is the Bronx Borough Lead Coalition. Bronx Health REACH, the Partnership and neighborhood contractors selected in the RFP will work together to support the development and implementation of environmental, infrastructure and systems changes around healthy eating, active living, alcohol and tobacco in the Bronx.  Details about the project and the RFP can be found online at http://fphny.org/whatsnew/rfps  The deadline for receipt of proposals is December 17th.  For more information, please contact Emma Rodgers at [email protected]

Bronx Health REACH Coalition meeting – December 7th
The next Coalition meeting for Bronx Health REACH will be Friday, December 7th from 9:30am-12:00pm, at Walker Memorial Baptist Church (120 E. 169th St, Bronx NY 10452).  The meeting will focus on presentations from housing groups highlighting exciting community development projects that are improving the health and wellness of Bronx residents.  To RSVP, please contact Yvette Holland at [email protected] or call 212-633-0800 x 1232

Bronx Health REACH Nutrition and Fitness Workgroup meeting – December 20th
The next Nutrition and Fitness Workgroup meeting will be Thursday, December 20th from 10am-12pm at the Morrisania Diagnostic & Treatment Center (1225 Gerard Ave, Bronx NY 10452), room 214.  We will continue to discuss strategies and a workplan for nutrition and fitness initiatives in both school and community settings.

Office of School Wellness Council Grantees Announced
Congratulations to the schools that received grants from the NYC Department of Education Office of School Wellness.  The School Wellness Council (SWC) program is awarding 125 schools with resources, tools and incentives to create a SWC, or further develop the work of an existing council. SWCs are charged with developing practical and innovative ways to address various components of wellness for students and the school community, e.g., PE, health education, physical activity, school nutrition, staff wellness, mental health, and other wellness-related programs. Grantee schools receive funding along with technical assistance through mentoring and networking events.  Bronx Health REACH’s partner schools that received the grant include: PS 43, PS 385, Health Opportunities High School, PS 55, PS 64, JHS 145, PS 204, P/IS 218, Validus Prep, Bronx Writing Academy, and Sheridan Academy.  P/IS 218 and Sheridan Academy have been designated Mentor schools and can share best practices with other schools looking to implement school wellness initiatives.

Bronx Academy of Promise Charter School in the News!
Congratulations to Bronx Academy of Promise Charter School (BAOP) for its innovative use of technology and achieving an “A” on their school report card!  BAOP is a Bronx Health REACH partner school and participates in the Obesity Prevention Program with nutrition education for third graders.  http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/bronx/verizon-foundation-launches-app-challenge-bronx-school-article-1.1209733

The BLK Projek Veggie Bus Project
The BLK Projek has received partial funding to start a Veggie Bus project in the Bronx. In collaboration with Wassaic Community Farm, the BLK project will rehab a beautifully painted school bus that runs on veggie oil to deliver and sell pesticide free produce and added value food.  To raise the remaining funds necessary for the project, Tanya Fields will be creating a video for a fundraising platform site.  If you would like to be interviewed about why this kind of project is important, and especially if you are a Bronx-Based resident, practitioner who works in the Bronx and/or Food Justice advocates, please contact Tanya Fields ASAP at [email protected].  

Bronx River Alliance “Bridge the Gap” campaign
The Bronx River Alliance and several other organizations are asking Mayor Bloomberg and Governor Cuomo to complete the construction of Starlight Park, Phase 2.   Starlight Park, which straddles both sides of the Bronx River in the Crotona Park East and Bronx River sections of the South Bronx, is a critical link for the Bronx River Greenway.  By completing the construction of the park, over 100,000 residents in adjacent neighborhoods will could gain access to the Bronx river, the new parks along its banks, and an invaluable bike and walking trail system.  To find out more information and support this request from Mayor Bloomberg and Governor Cuomo, please visit the Bronx River Alliance website.

New York State to Hire 5000 New Yorkers for Sandy Cleanup   
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo has announced that the state has secured a $27 million federal grant that will help put more than 5,000 unemployed New Yorkers to work helping clean-up communities still recovering from Hurricane Sandy.  The State Department of Labor will assist local communities to identify and hire workers. The full-time, temporary positions range from Community Relations Specialists providing outreach to the disaster-stricken communities, to administrative assistants. Individuals who are interested in applying for a job under this grant are encouraged to contact the Department of Labor at 1-888-4-NYSDOL (1-888-469-7365) or by visiting www.labor.ny.gov/sandyjobs.   All individuals must be unemployed to be eligible. Once hired, workers will earn approximately $15 per hour to work on short and long-term projects. In addition to offering benefits and on-the-job experience, each worker will be given assistance in finding their next job. Eligible youth will also be certified in the Governor's New York Youth Works program. 

Vote for Coqui the Chef in Online Childhood Obesity Challenge
Coqui the Chef, a Bronx-based social enterprise organization promoting healthier alternatives to traditional Latino cuisine, provides innovative cooking demonstrations and nutrition workshops throughout the tri-state area.  Coqui the Chef has entered an online challenge from the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, focused on seeking innovative solutions aimed at reducing obesity.  You can vote for Coqui the Chef’s proposal to reduce childhood obesity in the South Bronx, by visiting:  http://ajpmchallenge.calit2.net/submissions/entry/id/126 .  Remember to leave an inspiring comment!

Bronx Music Heritage Center Living Legends Event – December 5th
Bronx Health REACH Coalition member, WHEDco, has established the Bronx Music Heritage Center to celebrate the rich history and creative spirit that defines Bronx music.  On Wednesday December 5th, the Center will honor Andy Gonzalez at Hostos Center for the Arts and Culture at 450 Grand Concourse. For free tickets, call 718.518.4455. There is a $5 suggested donation to support BMHC programming.  http://www.whedco.org/images/whedco/pdf/Flyers/fall2012_livinglegendsposter_whiteband_nocropmarks.pdf

Monday, December 3, 2012

Cancer rates slightly up in NY, deaths down

ALBANY — The number of cancer cases in New York grew slightly since last year, up 2 percent to more than 109,000 incidences.

But the number of cancer deaths in New York dropped by about 200 deaths, a less than 1 percent decline, a study from the American Cancer Society estimated.

The rise in cancer cases -- 109,440 cases in 2012, up from 107,620 the year prior -- was driven mainly by a surge in melanoma and prostate cancer, according to the study. The American Cancer Society uses data from past years to project incidence and mortality rates.

Incidences of melanoma, a type of skin cancer, increased by 25 percent from last year. There are now more than 4,700 estimated cases in New York, up from 3,750 in 2011.

Melanoma deaths increased 6.8 percent; there are an estimated 470.

“It’s not a surprise, as we’ve seen melanoma on the rise. It reflects the sun-worshipping, indoor-tanning experience culture in New York, and it’s taking its toll,” said Blair Horner, vice president for advocacy for the American Cancer Society of NY and NJ.

The “tan ban,” a law Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed earlier this year to prohibit 14- to 16-year-olds from using tanning booths, will help, Horner said, but tanners are still unaware of the serious consequences of ultra-violet radiation exposure.

“To get young people who view themselves as invulnerable to understand the potential consequences, you have to come up with very aggressive public education,” Horner said.

He added that anti-smoking campaigns, including graphic advertisements, have been effective in encouraging smokers to quit.

Lung cancer mortality rates increased 3.5 percent since last year, with an estimated 8,880 related deaths in 2012. The number of cases, though, declined. There were 13,620, about a 4.1 percent drop from last year.
Horner said the increasing mortality rates for lung cancer are consistent with a “disturbing trend.”

“No one needs to smoke, and no one needs to go to an indoor tanning facility, unless they have a prescription from their doctor,” he said. “So those are lifestyle experiences that drive up the cancer rate and the mortality rate, and the government needs to do everything they can to drive those rates down.”

The state Department of Health operates a tobacco control program, which began in 2000. The office coordinates smoking cessation media campaigns and crafts state policy. Also, the state will soon launch a federally funded Medicaid incentives program encouraging smokers to quit.

The cancer with the highest incidence in New York, prostate cancer, increased 7.2 percent since last year, bringing the number of cases to 17,090. There was a 9 percent drop in deaths, down to 1,610.

Breast cancer incidence and death rates decreased. There were 14,730 cases and 2,420 deaths in 2012.
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