Health & Wellness

Press Releases

Youth Mental Health First Aid Training Being Offered in Westfield July 25-26

Crisis listening line Caring Contact will be offering Youth Mental Health First Aid Training in Westfield July 25 and July 26. The training is ideal for parents, teachers, coaches, counselors, pastors and adolescent group leaders.

The eight-hour course is being offered in two four-hour sessions, on July 25 and July 26 from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. at the First Baptist Church located at 170 Elm Street in Westfield.

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness:

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  • One in five youth aged 13-18 live with a mental illness.
  • More than one in 10 youths have a mood disorder; one in 10 have a behavior or conduct disorder; and nearly one in 10 have an anxiety disorder.
  • The average delay between onset of symptoms and intervention is eight to 10 years.
  • Suicide is the third leading cause of death in youths aged 10-24 and 90 percent of those who died by suicide had a underlying mental illness.

Youth Mental Health First Aid Training teaches participants the unique risk factors and warning signs of mental health problems in adolescents, builds understanding of the importance of early intervention and teaches how to help an adolescent in crisis or experiencing a mental health challenge. Participants will learn a five-step action plan for how to help young people in both crisis and non-crisis situations.

"Our youth are both our most precious and most vulnerable residents of society," said Janet Sarkos, Caring Contact executive director. “Teenagers face incredible pressure in today's environment and are bombarded by often conflicting messages from parents, friends and society. They may not know they are experiencing mental health illness or may be too ashamed to ask for help. They need the adults who have the most influence in their lives to help them. This training will enable participants to do that."

Registration is limited. To register, visit or call 908.301.1899.

Caring Contact is an award-winning, volunteer-staffed crisis hotline and listening community providing active listening support and best-in-class education to the Central and Northern New Jersey community. More than 100 volunteer listeners attentively and compassionately serve those in emotional distress, answering between 9,000 and 12,000 calls per year from people in crisis, having suicidal thoughts or simply feeling depressed and lonely. Caring Contact also educates communities about the power of personal connection.

If you are in crisis and need someone to listen, call them at 908-232-2880. To learn more, visit Anyone interested in becoming a volunteer listener should visit

Caring Contact serves Central and Northern New Jersey and is a primary responder to calls to the national suicide prevention lifeline (1-800-273-TALK or 1-800-SUICIDE) that originate in New Jersey. Callers also reach Caring Contact by dialing 908-232-2880. Those preferring to seek supporting through texting may text “heart” to 741-741. The hotline also provides best-in-class training to the Central and Northern New Jersey Community.

About Caring Contact

Caring Contact is an award-winning, volunteer-staffed caring and crisis hotline providing active listening support and best-in-class education to the Central and Northern New Jersey community. We attentively and compassionately serve those in emotional distress and educate our communities about the power of personal connection. We are affiliated with CONTACT USA, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline and the American Association of Suicidology. If you are in crisis and need someone to listen, call us at 908-232-2880. To learn more, visit

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Union High School Class of 1998 Planning 20th Reunion

March 23, 2018

UNION, NJ - Has it really been almost 20 years since you graduated from high school?

The Union High School class of 1998 will be celebrating their 20 Year Reunion on July 13 and are looking for former classmates to help spread the word.

The event will be at the Galloping Hill Golf Course, 3 Golf Dr, Kenilworth.  Tickets are $105.00 per person, which includes dinner and ...

Scavenger Hunt in Union Center

UNION, NJ - Can you solve the puzzle?

Join us on a scavenger hunt throughout Union Center on Saturday, March 31, from 12:00 - 4:00 p.m.  Stop by the Special Improvement District's 'Welcome Station', located at 1000A Stuyvesant Ave, for your scavenger hunt map, first egg clue and more!

Additional Stops for more clues:
Norma's Flowers Magic Fountain Union ...

Union Police Law Enforcement Explorer Program Seeks Students

UNION, NJ – The Union Police Department is looking for a few good students.

Union students, ages 14-18 in grades 8-12, interested in a law enforcement career, can apply for the Law Enforcement Explorer Program.

Explorers receive training in CPR, traffic control, accidents, crime prevention, and communications. Explorers also assist the Township with community events such as the ...

Union High School's February Female Athlete of the Month: Lacey Beall

March 23, 2018

UNION, NJ – Union High School senior Lacey Beall, a member of the school’s bowling team, has been selected February’s Female Athlete of the Month.

What’s your favorite part of being a high school athlete?. 

The Team, it is like one big family. Traveling all over New Jersey every Saturday morning and spending the afternoon celebrating our win. If we do not win, ...

Union High School's February Male Athlete of the Month: Elijah Waldron

UNION, NJ – Union High School senior Elijah Waldron, a member of the school’s wrestling team, has been selected February’s Male Athlete of the Month.

What’s your favorite part of being a high school athlete?. 

I love the team aspect of it.  Most of my closest friends come from wrestling, and I perform better when I have to do it for a team. 

Who is ...

Upcoming Events


Fri, March 23, 10:30 AM

Union Public Library, Union

Toddler Time

Arts & Entertainment


Fri, March 23, 3:30 PM

Union Public Library, Union

Teen Advisory Board Meeting

Education Giving Back


Sat, March 24, 10:00 AM

Burnet Middle School, Union

March for our Lives


Sat, March 24, 12:00 PM

Union Center, Union

EGGstravaganza Scavenger Hunt in Union Center

Information on Parking and Traffic for Saturday's 'March for Our Lives' Event

March 23, 2018

UNION, NJ – It is anticipated that several hundred people or more will participate in the Union County March for Our Lives event on Saturday morning in Union.

Students, teachers, parents, clergy and public officials from all over Union County will be walking from Burnet Middle School to Town Hall in an anti-gun violence march.

Parking will be available in the following ...

Springfield Fire Department Delivers Baby on West I-78

SPRINGFIELD, NJ - On March 20, 2018 at 8:14 a.m. the Springfield Fire Department was dispatched to Route 78 Westbound near milepost 50.2 for a report of a woman in labor on the side of the road.  

Captain Mastroeni (Unit 2) & Chief Palumbo (Unit 1) were the first units to arrive on scene, and quickly recognized that the woman would be unable to make it to the hospital in time for ...

Margaret Salisbury of Union Receives Women of Excellence Award

GARWOOD, NJ – Union resident Margaret Salisbury was one of several Union County women honored with a 2018 Women of Excellence Award at an event Friday night.

The event, hosted by the Commission on the Status of Women and sponsored by the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders, honors women in different fields.  Salisbury received a Lifetime Achievement Award.

In addition to ...

Rummage Sale

March 11, 2018

UNION, NJ - A rummage sale is scheduled for Saturday, March 17, to benefit Union Abroad's Trip to Iceland.

The sale will be held at Union High School, 2350 N. Third Street, from 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  Shoppers should enter through the "Rock" to Cafeteria A.


Man Dies from South Orange House Fire on Sunday

March 18, 2018

SOUTH ORANGE, NJ - A man has died from a house fire on Warwick Avenue in South Orange on Sunday afternoon, stated Thomas Fennelly, Essex County Chief Assistant Prosecutor.

The fire, which began about 2 p.m. was contained by about 5 p.m., and required mutual aid from fire departments in neighboring towns, according to firefighters at the scene.

UC Tech Student Volunteers Put Fun and Games to Work for Special Needs Learners

March 22, 2018

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- Earlier this month, a group of 51 students in grades 9 to 11 from the Teacher Education Academy at UC TECH staged an indoor carnival for special needs learners. More than 140 participants from the community attended the event and enjoyed plinko, corn hole, dance revolution, hula hoop activities, a DJ, prizes and more.

UC TECH is part of the Union County ...

AARP Driver Safety Class at Union Public Library

The AARP Driver Safety Course teaches valuable defensive driving strategies and provides a refresher of the rules of the road by trained volunteer. Since 1979, the course has helped more than 15 million drivers learn research-based tips to adapt their driving to compensate for physical and cognitive changes that may occur with aging. Plus, you may qualify for a multi-year automobile ...

Check Out BCB Community Bank's High Rate CDs

Get the most out of your savings with BCB Community Bank's high rate CD.

Check out BCB's 18-month CD interest rate.  Invest early and watch your money soar.  For more information, just visit or call your local BCB branch today in Union, Maplewood or South Orange:

Union Branch

2000 Morris Avenue
Union, NJ 07083

Maplewood Branch

156 ...

Union County Celebrates Arbor Day 2018 with Free Trees for Schools

In recognition of Arbor Day 2018, the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders is once again partnering with the Union County Shade Tree Advisory Board to sponsor the annual Arbor Day Tree Planting Program, which provides free trees for participating schools.

“The Arbor Day tree planting program is a Union County tradition that provides students with important hands-on lessons about the ...



AtlantiCast: Episode 13

On this episode of AtlantiCast, new clinical studies in the fields of cardiology and immunotherapy, national and statewide recognitions for Atlantic Health System medical centers and the inaugural AtlantiCast Collab Challenge!


Queen Mary and the Cruiser

Queen Mary and the Cruiser by David A. Thomas and Patrick Holmes (Naval Institute Press, 1997)

“Had the forenoon watch and after eating went out onto the fo'c'sle. Just arrived at the top of the ladder by the PO's heads when the wave hit me---waist high---and knocked me over. Looking astern---through the bulkhead door which was open, saw the stern of a ship sticking up out of ...

In Cold Blood by Truman Capote

In Cold Blood by Truman Capote (Random House, 1965)


In Cold Blood is, quite simply, the grand-daddy of true crime writing, dubbed by Capote, himself, as the first non-fiction novel (although Norman Mailer argued the point when he published The Executioner's Song in 1979.) The conditions under which I read In Cold Blood for the first time were pretty weird, which was another ...

'Trying' explores age, youth and points of history in poignant production

‘Trying’ explores youth, age and points of history in poignant production

By Liz Keill

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ – The George Street Playhouse presents an engrossing, two-character play based on the real life of Francis Biddle, former Attorney General.

Biddle, a Harvard educated lawyer, served under Franklin Roosevelt and later Harry Truman during the Nuremberg Tribunal. His ...

The Role of Meal Replacements in Weight Loss

March 20, 2018

Obesity is at epidemic proportions in the United States and in other developed and developing countries. The prevalence of obesity is increasing not only in adults, but also in children and adolescents. We all know that obesity is a significant risk factor for various chronic illnesses, most importantly heart disease and diabetes, but also cancer and osteoarthritis, liver and kidney disease, ...

Commemoration of Jay Kielwasser, Animal Control Officer

March 16, 2018

UNION, NJ – A commemoration of the late Jay Kielwasser's work as Union’s Animal Control Officer took place at Wednesday evening’s Board of Health meeting.

Board President Jackie Carter said Kielwasser, who passed away in April, was the first Animal Control officer appointed by the Board of Health. 

“You really don’t know how someone ...

Letters to the Editor