Healthier Somerset making vibrant connections to inform, educate

Patricia Walsh | Contributor
October 30, 2918

Healthier Somerset – an organization representing thousands of Somerset County residents as well as businesses, schools, non-profit organizations, healthcare providers, government agencies and faith-based organizations – is celebrating October as Healthier Somerset Month.

Founded in 2010, Healthier Somerset is a coalition convened by Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Somerset created to improve the health and well-being of all who live and work in Somerset County.

The coalition’s goal is to make Somerset County the healthiest county in New Jersey by engaging those who live and work in Somerset County through active participation in good health habits, increasing access to choices that promote healthy lifestyles, and promoting policy changes that improve health.

Its mission is to work collaboratively by sharing information and creating alliances among individuals and organizations who are working toward mutual goals to create a healthier Somerset County. In the eight years since its creation, Healthier Somerset has grown to include over 50 members, creating phenomenal connections that have enabled the sharing of resources, information and expertise.



South Bound Brook adopts Complete Streets program to foster public health

Mike Deak | Bridgewater Courier News
October 6, 2918

SOUTH BOUND BROOK – The borough is literally taking steps to improve the health of its residents.

It’s become the 13th of Somerset County’s 21 municipalities to participate in the state’s Complete Streets program that promotes roads designed for safe access for all users, including pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists and transit riders.

The adoption of the program continues the borough’s participation in the “Building Bridges to Better Health” initiative sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to foster a “culture of health” in Bound Brook and South Bound Brook. The program is administered by Healthier Somerset.

READ: Healthier Somerset: Culture of health in Bound Brook, South Bound Brook

READ: Somerset County – the healthiest county in New Jersey?

“Complete Streets ensures that South Bound Brook’s transportation policies support active, healthy lifestyles among our residents,” said Mayor Caryl Shoffner. “South Bound Brook is a walkable, livable community, and we are completely supportive of this initiative.”

“Healthier Somerset applauds Mayor Shoffner and the South Bound Brook Borough Council for their support of Complete Streets,” said Serena Collado, director, Community Health, RWJSomerset and convener of Healthier Somerset. “By approving and implementing transportation policy initiatives that encourage healthy activities such as walking and bike riding, South Bound Brook officials are improving public health in their town.”

Staff Writer Mike Deak: 908-243-6607;

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Healthier Somerset: Access to transportation options crucial to healthy living

September 25, 2018  |  Melissa Feltmann, Healthier Somerset

(Photo: ~Courtesy of RideWise)

SOMERVILLE – As the Healthier Somerset Coalition strives to make Somerset County the healthiest county in New Jersey, an area of focus is access to care.

Specifically, one of the coalition’s goals is to improve the access to health care services for those living and working in Somerset County. This can be especially true for certain populations within the community.

According to the American Journal of Public Health, transportation is the third most commonly cited barrier for accessing health services among older adults. In 2017, The North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority (NJTPA) took a closer look at existing transportation barriers within the Northern New Jersey region and identified awareness of services as one of those barriers with an unmet need.


Healthier Somerset: Addressing school safety through community resource partnerships

August 28, 2018  |  Kevin Carroll, Green Brook Township Schools Superintendent

Students will be back in class in a matter of weeks. The summer is a great time to reflect on the achievements and setbacks from the year before, set new goals for the new year, and get some well-deserved downtime. School districts around the county are doing the same thing this summer. School administrators and support staff are looking back at last year as they prepare for the 2018-2019 school year.

One of the biggest concerns is always the safety and welfare of all children and adults.

Last year school districts around the nation were shocked and saddened by the reoccurring acts of violence perpetrated in schools. The shootings at Parkland, Florida, in February of this year had all school personnel questioning if they were ready for such a tragic event.

The Somerset County School Security Task Force asked themselves how they could prevent such an occurrence.

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