Health Initiative reaches 5,122 employess with grant
Wednesday, August 29, 2012 - 5:14 pm

To the Editor:

Currently, the Health Initiative is working with several St. Lawrence County businesses, through the NYS grant funded Creating Healthy Worksites program, for a combined reach of 5,122 employees.

While in varying stages of programming, many of these businesses are already seeing positive change in the workplace. Claxton Hepburn’s employee wellness team, the “Health Nuts” have implemented a host of creative programming ideas, including: hosting the Ogdensburg Green Market on-site every Thursday this season, having murals painted by Clint Taylor in their stairwell to encourage stair promotion, they’ve purchased two bicycles for employee use, increased healthy options in their Cornerstone Café, subsidized on-site yoga and dance classes, and more.

St. Joseph’s Home is promoting on-site physical activity by opening up their physical therapy center to all employees and has purchased both a treadmill and an elliptical trainer for employee use.

Canton-Potsdam Hospital had 84 teams sign up to participate in the One Step Forward walking program.

River Ledge Health Care and Rehabilitation now has an employee garden and Maplewood, developed wellness committee with wellness mission and vision statements, and is the new home to Yoga Loft.

St. Lawrence County has worked toward weight management and stair promotion. SUNY Potsdam has opted to roll out their weight management program through their online learning system, accessible by all employees, to work on their weight management individually and challenged employees to use the stairs. North Country Savings Bank has seen consistent participation in the Choose to Lose weight management program, and is moving from extrinsic incentives (cash awards) to a more intrinsic incentive system, where employees are motivated by how much better they feel, rather than by financial incentive for participation.

Programming is designed to create a culture shift making it easier for employees to adopt healthy lifestyle changes with support from management, encouragement from fellow employees and an environment that makes the healthy choice, the easy choice.

All Round 2 businesses will participate in a one-day adventure based training programming August 30, 2012, which will offer training, a healthy picnic and afternoon kayaking on the Racquette River.

The Health Initiative would like to congratulate all the businesses currently participating in the Creating Healthy Worksites Program on their efforts and successes. Creating Healthy Worksites will be recruiting for participation in Round 3 in early fall, any businesses interested in participating should contact Kimberly DesChamp, by phone: 261-4760 x233 or by email: kim@gethealthyslc.org.

Kimberly DesChamp

Health Initiative Coordinator