New Jersey Health Initiatives - A Better State of Health
A Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Program
Building a Culture of Health in Passaic County

This spring, our coalition hosted a Building a Culture of Health Blueprint for Action Breakfast forum to communicate our implementation progress to a broad audience, celebrate successes of community partners, and invite community stakeholders to participate in completing blueprint strategies to fill in gaps of work.  We had more than 90 guests attend, representing a wide variety of sectors and five different municipalities in Southern Passaic County.

We have overcome challenges with the support of enthusiastic, persistent partners who are committed to building more equitable communities.

We were pleased to be joined by New Jersey Health Initiatives (NJHI) and hear remarks from NJHI Deputy Director of Programs Diane Hagerman regarding how our work aligns with a statewide movement to build a Culture of Health.  We were also pleased to have Jennifer Fassbender, from the Reinvestment Fund, share a national initiative called Invest Health and the Invest Health Paterson team’s successes to leverage investment in the community’s 4th ward.

Our community Blueprint for Action is a call to collective action to build a Culture of Health in Paterson and the surrounding municipalities. It is a reflection of the direction, alignment and commitment of many organizations, community members, and institutions that are united to improve our communities. Its development and implementation is led by our Boundary Spanning Leadership Development Team Members:

  • Charlene W. Gungil, DHSc., Director/Health Officer of Passaic County Health Department
  • Ken Morris, Vice President of External Affairs, St. Joseph’s Healthcare System
  • Mike Powell, Director of Economic Development, City of Paterson
  • Rosie Grant, Executive Director, Paterson Education Fund
  • Mary Celis, Project Director, Director of Health Initiatives, United Way of Passaic County

We are halfway through the grant period that began with developing the Blueprint for Action. We have overcome challenges with the support of enthusiastic, persistent partners who are committed to building more equitable communities. Our success thus far is the result of the efforts and creativity of many.  Please read more about our progress here: Blueprint for Action Progress Report.

For more information about the Building a Culture of Health: Blueprint for Action in Passaic County please contact Mary Celis, Director of Health Initiatives, United Way of Passaic County: maryc@unitedwaypassaic.org or visit our Facebook page:  @PassaicFood.

Photo caption: The Passaic Food Policy Council Boundary Spanning Leadership Development Team Members with NJHI Deputy Director of Programs Diane Hagerman.
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Project
Author
Mary Celis
Organization
The United Way of Passaic County