Movin-for-LIFE-brings-residents-together-for-active-healthy-fun

Movin' for LIFE brings residents together for active, healthy fun

Providing ongoing opportunities for healthy living and community building is a major focus for the Movin' for LIFE program, a community-engaged health promotion program of the Tulane Prevention Research Center. (Click on the photo to see a slideshow of photos from Movin’ for LIFE activities in 2017).

"The Movin' for LIFE activities have the potential to positively impact behaviors that can prevent many chronic diseases, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer," said Dr. Carolyn Johnson, Tulane PRC director and lead on the project. "The residents of the Ninth Ward have a special opportunity here, and it is gratifying to see how eager many are to participate and make their lives healthier."

Starting in March 2017, the PRC's Movin' for LIFE team worked with members of the Movin' for LIFE Community Coalition to hold free, public activities starting with monthly Walkin' for LIFE Community Walks. The first walk saw more than two dozen walkers from the Upper and Lower 9th Ward. The walks rotate around the 9th Ward's various neighborhoods so each community has an opportunity to be showcased.

"It is not about the distance we walk, but about the steps we take together to inspire others," said Revonda Darensbourg, The Tulane PRC Movin' for LIFE program manager, who has helped coordinate the walks. "We enjoy walking together to connect with neighbors, to raise awareness, and to be present in our communities. We are walking for life, our health, and to energize our families, friends, and communities to initiate change together."

Following the launch of these walks, the coalition decided to expand the programming. The group began holding quarterly Dancin' for LIFE classes and then Yoga for LIFE classes, led by members of the coalition Greer Mendy of Tekrema Center for Art & Culture and Jeff Supak of Global Green USA. Reading for LIFE was also developed to incorporate education-based goals of the coalition, especially member Mary Abler of the Martin Luther King Public Library, to nurture young learners through events. For example, Movin' for LIFE helped host the Giving Tree Fest on Dec. 2, which included a toy drive and give-away, story time readings, group fitness activities, and more. The event was also a way to connect current Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine students with community engagement and service opportunities.

More activities are in the works for 2018. For more information about the schedule of events, stay tuned and check the Movin' for LIFE calendar of events on the website at movin4life.org and on Twitter @Movin4LIFE and Facebook www.facebook.com/Movin4LIFEnola.

By Naomi Englar, Tulane PRC Staff
December 2017

(Click on the photo above to see a slideshow of photos from Movin’ for LIFE activities. Photos by Tulane PRC Staff. Photos 1-4: Walkin’ for LIFE. Photos 5-6: Dancin’ for LIFE. Photo 7: Yoga for LIFE. Photos: 8-10: Reading for LIFE.)

Topics:   community health , health communication , physical activity , walking , youth engagement

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