Cory Booker Takes The Million Moms’ Mayors Challenge

By Anna Maria Barry-Jester

Oct 13, 2011 4:51pm

Newark Mayor Cory Booker believes his home town should have the healthiest moms and babies in the United States. Today he is tweeting out to his 1.1 million followers to make sure New Jersey wins the bragging rights in a state Text4baby competition – as part of a new Million Moms’ Mayors Challenge.

Mayor Booker was the first official to take part in the Million Moms’ Mayors Challenge, a competition to see which mayor can help their city sign up the most moms for Text4baby,  a free service for pregnant women and new moms that sends three cell phone text messages a week with critical health tips that help moms and their babies stay healthy.

The statistics are stunning for newborn health in the United States: more than 500,000 babies are born prematurely and an estimated 28,000 children die before their first birthday each year.  Yet fewer than 250,000 women in the US have signed up for Text4Baby since it was launched in February 2010.

One of the goals of  the Million Moms Challenge, which is helping moms and babies around the world, is to sign up a million moms-to-be in the United States for this free service.

The mayors who join the challenge could help their state take the lead in Text4Baby’s State Enrollment Contest, a national competition to see which states could sign up the most women for the free texting service. The winners will be announced on November 1st at a reception in Washington, DC. So far, North Carolina, Wyoming, Delaware, New Hampshire and Alabama are in the lead. Which twitterati will join the challenge next and help their state take the lead, Chicago’s @RahmEmanuel? Los Angeles’ @villaraigosa?

All you mayors, senators, congressmen and governors, it’s not too late to take the challenge! A million babies will thank you.



Text4baby is the country’s first free, health education program providing timely tips and expert advice directly to the cell phones of pregnant women and new moms.  By texting “BABY” (or “BEBE” for Spanish) to 511411, women receive weekly text messages, timed to their due date or their baby’s birth date through the baby’s first year of life. The messages, which have been developed in collaboration with government and nonprofit health experts, deal with nutrition, immunization and birth defect prevention, among other topics.

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