Developing Healthy Habits That Last a Lifetime

By Deborah Antoine, President and CEO, New York Junior Tennis & Learning (NYJTL)

Our partnership with EmblemHealth speaks volumes about the value of “experiential” learning. Since the development of the Healthy Living program, a program that teaches students how to make smart nutritional choices in a fun and engaging way, we’ve reached thousands of youngsters and their families.

Through the program, NYJTL students in over 40 locations across New York City have received lessons on food groups and on the benefits of a healthy diet. Students also receive a “Bodega Buddy” clip card that hooks onto book bags and identifies healthy food choices.

The responses we have received from students and their families have been absolutely remarkable. The program is – so to speak – bearing fruit.

“Healthy Living changed my life,” says Mikaela, an 8th grade student, “and by checking the ingredients on food labels, I eat healthy every time my mom cooks in the kitchen.”

4th grader Jessica adds, “Nutrition is important because it will help me live longer and it will keep me healthy. It is also making me stronger. Eating things like fruits and vegetables are good for you and help you live a happier life.”

Ronnie, who is in 6th grade, mentions “Healthy Living is great because I learned about calories, what cortisol is, how to eat so I’m strong and what will make me healthy when I grow up.

At NYJTL, our mission is to develop the character of young people through tennis and education for a lifetime of success on and off the court. The Healthy Living program we have developed with EmblemHealth illustrates our commitment to setting our students up for success by giving them the tools needed so that they may live healthier lives now and later.