Vulnerable Population Assessment

Vulnerable Population Assessment

Community Description

Windshield surveys provide useful information about communities and can form a baseline for making interventions towards improving the community. I conducted a windshield survey in Rockaway Township New Jersey and made several observations of the township, which can be used to plan for its improvement. The town is located in Morris County and covered around a total of 41.40 square miles. The population of the township is more than 24554 people as shown in the results of a census conducted in the year 2016. The dwellers of the town are mostly residential community and have a major highway and other smaller roads. It has a variety of restaurants and shops along with parks and playgrounds. There are three grammar schools, one intermediate school and one high school in the town. There are also exclusive apartments for the adults aged over 55 years. The purpose of this paper is to explore the middle-aged parents as a vulnerable population in Rockaway Township.

Vulnerable Population Overview

The middle-aged parents are the group, which I identified as vulnerable from the survey. The parents have a hectic lifestyle, which is characterized by an overload of activities, which puts a lot of pressure on them. The parents have to pick and drop their children to school, take them to the park and ensure that they participate in different extracurricular activities. It is sad that the parents have prioritized the health of their families and children at the expense of their health. Moreover, the parents are expected to work hard to keep up with the expensive life in the city. As a result, the parents have to work hard even if it means overtime and having several jobs to sustain their lifestyles.

The stress of bringing up children in the modern society has put a lot of pressure on these middle-aged parents in Rockaway Township. Every individual has a desire to have some quiet time alone or with a partner without the pressure of children or stress of a job. The parents do not have any extra time left which they can use for their leisure to relax and keep fit. As a result, most of the middle-aged parents in Rockaway Township are overweight at a glance, which is mostly due to lack of physical activity since they rarely get time for exercise. The busy lifestyle also predisposes the middle-aged parents to stress given that they take care of everyone except themselves.

Strengths, Risk Factors, and Barriers

The middle-aged parents in Rockaway Township are at risk of developing obesity and its related complications including cardiovascular disorders and arthritis (Bauer et al., 2014). They do not have time for physical activity, as they are busy taking care of their children and working to earn a living. The middle-aged parents are therefore caught up in confusion between handling work and taking care of children at the expense of their health. The category of middle-aged parents in Rockaway Township is likely to suffer from obesity because of lack of time for physical activity.

The primary barrier to the middle-aged parents in Rockaway Township, which hinders their key to good health, is the lack of time for physical activity. The residents are very busy with work and children, which leads them with no time to take care of their health. However, the individuals can still make plans to improve their health by rescheduling their activities and organizing them in a better way. For instance, the parents can plan for the children to be picked and dropped from school by the school vehicles instead of them taking the children back and forth school. Such a decision will create some extra time for the parents to engage in exercise if they wish.

The parents are can also engage in physical activity when they take their children for leisure by attending fun places, which have a gym. The parents can, therefore, leave the children under the watch of a reliable instructor and go to the gym section or even go with them to teach them the importance of keeping fit. Attending leisure places with a gymnasium will be time saving and ensure that there is the maximization of time which leads to satisfaction for both parents and children. The Rockaway Township middle-aged parents will take advantage of such opportunities and engage in physical exercise, which would reduce their risk for obesity and other disorders.

Community Resources

The Rockaway Township Department of Community Services is one of the major community resources for the township. The program contains several community initiatives, which can help the middle-aged parents achieve optimal health and avoid obesity. The division of parks and recreation can help the residents of Rockaway Township to engage in physical activity through various strategies meant to reduce the overweight rates. The department supports athletic and recreational activities for the adults and children hence ensuring that they do not fall into obesity. Rockaway Township has several public parks, which the parents can use not only for the fun of their children but also for their help.

Community Health Problem Diagnosis

The primary problem for the people of Rockaway Township is the lack of physical activity, which makes them overweight and predisposes them to obesity and related illnesses. The primary goal for the population according to the healthy people 2020 objectives is to improve health, fitness, and quality of life through physical activity (, 2017). The community health nurse will focus on meeting the first and second objective of the goal, which is to reduce the proportion of adults who engage in no leisure physical activity. The second aim is to increase the number of adults who meet the federal activity guidelines concerning aerobic physical exercise and strengthening muscles.

Summary and Conclusion

Rockaway Township is located in Morris County in New Jersey with a population of around 24554 people. The middle-aged parents residing in Rockaway Township form the main vulnerable population, as they are mostly overweight and prone to obesity and its complications. The parents have to take and pick their children from school while ensuring that they meet the financial needs of the family. They rarely get time for themselves and therefore have become overweight due to the lack of physical activity. The Rockaway Township Department of Community Services can help the individuals attain optimal physical activity with the various programs for recreation and sport.

The community health nurse will work towards achieving the healthy people 2020 objectives one and two under the goals of enhancing physical activity. The nurse will work with the community to ensure that the middle-aged parents of Rockaway Township achieve optimal physical activity as recommended. In conclusion, a community health nurse can help the middle-aged parents in Rockaway Township to attain optimal health through enhanced physical activity to prevent overweight and obesity.







Bauer, U. E., Briss, P. A., Goodman, R. A., & Bowman, B. A. (2014). Prevention of chronic disease in the 21st century: elimination of the leading preventable causes of premature death and disability in the USA. The Lancet, 384(9937), 45-52.

Healthy People 2020. (2017). Retrieved from



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