Generation at Risk: Joining Forces to Fight Childhood Obesity

Key Voices in the Film

Photo of New Jersey Department of Health Commissioner Mary O'Dowd.

"You have to think carefully about the approach when you are trying to bring nutrition to a community."

Mary O'Dowd

New Jersey Department of Health Commissioner

Photo of Mayor Cory Booker.

"Many cities struggle with life-threatening issues like gun violence. The reality is: is number one killer of people in my city is obesity related illnesses."

Mayor Cory Booker

Mayor of Newark, New Jersey

Photo of Tammy Pacheco.

"Many parents choose safety over nutrition and exercise. They can't let their kids walk the streets and there is no safe place to play."

Tammy Pacheco

Mother of 13 year old with diabetes

Photo of Alicia Rivera.

"Supermarkets are not close to where we live so it's hard for us to eat healthy and teach our kids the way you should eat."

Alicia Rivera

Mother of three children—her family is living with three generations of diabetes.

Photo of Rececca Rivera.

"When I was first diagnosed with diabetes, I thought it was going to be the end of my life. I didn't think I could get it as such a young age."

Rebecca Rivera

17-year-old Camden resident

Photo of Lisanne Finston.

"Its not just as simple as putting food on a plate, we need to be addressing the quality of the food on that plate and ensuring that people have consistent access to healthy and nutritious foods."

Lisanne Finston

Executive Director, Elijah's Promise Soup Kitchen, New Brunswick New Jersey

Photo of Dwayne Proctor.

"There's no magic bullet, there's no fad diet that's going to get us there, there's no solution waiting for us around the corner. We need to make fundamental shifts in how we address food issues in this country."

Dwayne Proctor

Senior Program Officer
Director, Childhood Obesity Program Management Team Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Photo of Tanya Pacheco.

"In order to buy groceries I have to catch a bus and a taxi and then catch another cab back home and it costs forty-five dollars just in transportation."

Tanya Pacheco

Camden resident, mother of 4

Photo of Jasmine Ratliff-Hall.

"We hear many stories about children not knowing that you can pull an apple off a tree. Or you can pull a carrot out of the ground."

Jasmine Ratliff-Hall

Program Officer, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Photo of Dan Hoffman.

"It's extremely important to me that the work I do, has an impact on the policies that will turn around and affect the health of children and adults."

Dan Hoffman

Professor of Nutritional Sciences, Rutgers University

Photo of Peter Gillies.

"New Jersey has the highest incidence of obesity for children ages 3-5. We must start thinking of where our food comes from and who in our state has access to fresh fruits and vegetables."

Peter Gillies

Director, New Jersey Institute for Food, Nutrition and Health

Photo of Cristiane dos Santos.

"This is a high risk pregnancy. I have high blood pressure and diabetes."

Cristiane dos Santos

expectant mother of 5, Brazil

Photo of Yago Santos-Souza.

Yago Santos-Souza

8-year-old Brazilian boy diagnosed with obesity

Photo of Margarete da Silva.

"We have to work extra hard to get money for food cards."

Margarete da Silva

Mother of 2, Brazil

Photo of Mae Strong.

"Many of these families are at risk for diabetes. These children are here from 7 am to 6 at night. There is a trust that we will do what is right for these children"

Mae Strong

Director of the Mae Strong Child Development Center

Photo of Thomas Farley.

"I care an awful lot about childhood obesity. It affects the health of children, it affects the psychology of children so this really matters."

Thomas Farley

New York City Health Commissioner

Photo of Michael Moss.

Michael Moss

Pulitzer Prize Winning Journalist, The New York Times

Photo of Naa Oyo A. Kwate.


Naa Oyo A. Kwate

Associate Professor of Human Ecology and Africana Studies, Rutgers

Photo of Rob Scott.


Rob Scott

Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Rutgers

Photo of Andy Egan.


Andy Egan

Associate Professor of Philosophy, Rutgers

Photo of Abena Busia.

"One of the things that makes this complicated is that we have become very diverse communities and cultures."

Abena Busia

Professor, Women and Gender Studies, Rutgers

Photo of Debra Palmer.

"There's just a plethora of research that needs to be done, with any kind of researcher there is who touches human lives."

Debra Palmer

Director, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education

Photo of Shawn Arent.

"We actually see that the schools that have kept physical education in the curriculum, perform better on standardized tests. Brain activity is better in these kids that undergo physical activity."

Shawn Arent

Associate Professor of Exercise Science, Rutgers University

Photo of Darrin Anderson.


Darrin Anderson

Associate Executive Director New Jersey YMCA