Community Health Improvement Services

The Beth Challenge Inspires Local Churches

Reverend Allen S. Potts of Greater Abyssinian Baptist Church in Newark

There is a reason why Reverend Allen S. Potts of Greater Abyssinian Baptist Church in Newark may be even more energized than ever during his Sunday sermons. Reverend Potts, along with members of his church, is reaping the benefits of good health and nutrition.

Through The Beth Challenge, coordinated by Newark Beth Israel Medical Center, congregants participated in free classes to help them improve their diets, and had access to a personal trainer who led cardio and weight- training sessions. The results speak for themselves: of the six local churches that took the “challenge” to see which one could lose the most body weight, Reverend Potts’ church came in at number one — with a total of 800 pounds of body weight lost.

“Health and wellness is essential,” says Reverend Potts. “The Beth Challenge has brought a sense of inspiration and health consciousness to us all. This was not just a one-time lifestyle contest – it helped our church work towards a change in culture and lifestyle.”

The Beth Challenge is just one example of ways that RWJBarnabas Health partners with community leaders and groups to improve the health status of New Jersey residents. The Challenge continues with the number of participating churches expanding, resulting in more than 6,000 pounds lost, creating healthier communities.

Newark Beth Israel Medical Center - Newark
Newark Beth Israel Medical Center (NBIMC) and Children’s Hospital of New Jersey (CHoNJ) have served Newark, Essex County, New Jersey and the metropolitan area for more than 110 years and are also one of the area’s largest employers. NBIMC offers many high quality medical specialties and centers of excellence. NBIMC has an award-winning heart transplant program and is the only hospital in the state to perform lung transplants. NBIMC is a major teaching affiliate of Rutgers New Jersey Medical School.

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