Strategy: Worksite Wellness
Wellness No Longer a “Stretch”
The Isanti County Wellness Program is reaching more employees, thanks to the Statewide Health Improvement Program (SHIP). Membership has grown since two new department representatives joined the Wellness Committee.
In December 2013, the Committee developed vision and mission statements. “The mission of the Wellness Committee is to foster a worksite culture that supports anyone’s desire to make healthy lifestyle choices,” said Melissa Carstensen, the Isanti County SHIP Coordinator. The Wellness Committee also identified goals for 2014, which include improving employees’ physical fitness and nutrition as well as updating the County’s tobacco policy.
More than 350 Isanti County employees were surveyed regarding their interest in a variety of wellness activities. Survey results indicated that many employees were interested in on-site fitness classes, “Lunch-and-Learn” events, and worksite wellness challenges.
The Wellness Committee requested bids for on-site fitness classes and worked with the Human Resources Department, Attorney’s Office, and Isanti County Board to secure the necessary approvals. On-site fitness classes offer employees an option for physical activity before or after work. This reduces stress and the risk for chronic disease such as obesity as well as improves employees’ wellness overall.
Yoga is the first on-site fitness class offered by the Wellness Committee. The class reached its maximum capacity in three days, as employees continued to sign up. “I am excited to learn more poses!” said JoEllen H., an Isanti County employee, “Thanks to the Wellness Program for this opportunity.”
In addition to yoga, Isanti County employees may attend monthly “Lunch-and-Learn” events scheduled throughout the year and compete in worksite wellness challenges against other businesses in the community.