LIVINGSTON, NJ – Caldwell University is teaming up with the West Essex YMCA to help combat childhood obesity via a special event featuring the Caldwell University men’s and women’s basketball teams. The event will take place on Wednesday, between 3:30 p.m. and 5:00 p.m., at Harrison Elementary School, which is located at 148 North Livingston Avenue in Livingston.

Children in the YMCA’s after school programs will be given the opportunity to get on the court with Caldwell University’s finest athletes to learn the skills of the game and shoot around, while celebrating the New Jersey YMCA’s seven-year-old Healthy U initiative.

“The YMCA is committed to educating the kids in our community about healthy living and Healthy U is our way of doing that in an exciting and effective way,” said West Essex YMCA Health Enhancement Director Barbara Santola. “We want the kids to know that being active can be fun.”

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The New Jersey YMCA State Alliance and the Horizon Foundation for New Jersey established Healthy U in 2008 and it has since grown into the most comprehensive and largest childhood obesity prevention and awareness program in the United States.

The Horizon Foundation has invested nearly $5 million in Healthy U to promote healthy eating and maintaining daily physical activity.

It is estimated that one out of three children are obese or overweight, according to the Y. Childhood obesity puts kids at risk of serious health problems.

Children participating in the event will not only stay physically active on the court with the Cougars, but will also get the chance to ask questions about the game of basketball and improve fundamental skills.

“The basketball event demonstrates how being physically active can be fun,” said Santola. “And who better to promote healthy living than college athletes?"

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