Launch of Wellness Week in New York and Cities throughout the Americas

14 Sep 2011

What:  The launch of Wellness Week, an initiative designed to promote ways cities can help prevent noncommunicable diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular and respiratory diseases, and diabetes by creating environments that promote good nutrition, physical activity, and prevention of tobacco use and harmful use of alcohol.

Activities in New York will include interactive tables that focus on healthy living, a farmers' market, demonstrations by local restaurants preparing healthy options, and a group warm-up session hosted by physical fitness expert Terri Kennedy.

Wellness Week is also being celebrated in cities throughout the Americas and in Spain.

When:  Friday, 16 September 2011 from noon to 3 p.m. 

Where:  The Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. Harlem State Office Building at 125th and Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. Blvd.


  • Dr. Mirta Roses Periago, Director, Pan American Health Organization
  • Dr. Thomas Farley, New York City Health Commissioner
  • Lloyd Williams, CEO, Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce
  • Dr. Jo Ivey Boufford, President, New York Academy of Medicine
  • Dr. Lisa Staiaco, President, the City College of New York
  • Dr. John Palmer, Chair, Healthy Eating Active Living Committee, Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce
  • Commissioner Farley will present a proclamation to open Wellness Week on behalf of New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg.

Context:  Wellness Week was originally inspired by Caribbean Wellness Day, which is celebrated on 13 September each year in Caribbean countries to raise public awareness about noncommunicable diseases and prevention through healthy living. This year, cities throughout the hemisphere will participate in Wellness Week—including New York City, Buenos Aires, Havana, Mexico City, Quito, and Asunción—with activities ranging from health walks and bike rides to healthy-food fairs.

Wellness Week comes on the eve of the first United Nations High-Level Meeting on Non-communicable Diseases, which will bring heads of government together on September 19-20 in New York to discuss the impact noncommunicable diseases and the need for joint action to prevent and control them.