Wellness RX project seeks to help families get healthier

Project partners Mayo Clinic with New Town Success Zone

By Ashley Spicer - Reporter, anchor, David Benfield - Photojournalist

The Mayo Clinic and New Town Success Zone held the Wellness RX project kickoff event Saturday

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A new project that kicked off Saturday in Jacksonville hopes to get you and your whole family healthy. The effort comes after a thorough review of health needs in the city by the Mayo Clinic.

The Wellness RX project is an effort between the Mayor Clinic and the New Town Success Zone. Its purpose is to help families who may not have the best access to health care. Specifically, it seeks to help those who live in the New Town area of Jacksonville.

“The health disparities (in New Town) exceeds just about any area compared to other zip codes throughout Duval County," Dr. Jevetta Standford, with New Town Success Zone, said.

Dr. Floyd Willis, with the Mayo Clinic, expressed his support for the New Town Success Zone and said the program could be duplicated in other areas in the future. 

“This has been an area of focus for us for a number of years,” Willis said. “The New Town Success Zone is a novel idea in that if appropriate resources are placed there, and positive things occur, this could be a model that could be duplicated.”

The Wellness RX kickoff event was held at Edwards Water College, where there were prizes given at the door, informational booths, giveaways and fitness demonstrations.

“They have a lot of great things in here, some Alzheimer’s awareness, very educational and really great for health awareness,” said Dana McCaenny, who attended the event.

The event also had guest speakers like Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry.

“We certainly have neighborhoods that have been left behind for years,” Curry said. “I've talked about those in my year and a half in office, and am committed to those. My budget priorities represent that.”

The organizers of the event said they hope people walk away feeling more educated, can develop healthier habits and encourage each other to reach health goals.

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