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Westfield Area Y and UnitedHealthcare Kick Off Annual 7th Grade Initiative to Help Students Form Healthy Habits

Michael McGuire, CEO of UnitedHealthcare of New York and New Jersey, observes as Aislinn O’Keefe participates in the Sportwall competition at last year’s kickoff.      Credits: Westfield Area Y

The Westfield Area Y along with UnitedHealthcare is kicking off its annual 7th Grade Initiative on Tuesday, October 8th from 7:00-8:15 pm in the Gym at the Main Y Facility, 220 Clark Street in Westfield.

Seventh grade students in Cranford, Garwood, Mountainside and Westfield along with their families are invited to attend the kickoff.  The evening will include fitness testing, a climbing wall, advice from personal trainers and a nutritionist as well as other activities for 7th graders and their families.  Healthy refreshments will also be served.

This program is intended to heighten awareness and combat the epidemic of youth obesity that our community/nation is currently facing.  Research indicates that seventh grade is a key junction in a child’s development of attitudes and behaviors regarding body image, nutrition and self esteem.  The goal of the 7th Grade Initiative is to help kids pass through this critical time of development with a healthy self-image and a thorough understanding of the importance of exercise and nutrition throughout the teen years and into adulthood. 

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All participants who do not currently have an active Y membership will receive a complimentary Pre-Teen Plus membership in addition to physical, nutritional and educational opportunities throughout the 2013-2014 school year.  Parents will have the opportunity to register their children for the 7th Grade Initiative at the kickoff. 

The 7th Grade Initiative also offers students the opportunity to participate in the Annual UnitedHealthcare Health Bee, a quiz-show style competition that test students’ knowledge about health and fitness topics. 

Please contact Amanda Aquirre at (908) 233-2700 x258 or e-mail if you are interested in participating or if you have any questions regarding this program.

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