Cottonwood County Family Services Agency (CCFSA) is working on the Statewide Health Improvement Program (SHIP) worksite wellness strategy. The organization has made strides to improve the culture of health in the worksite and has passed a Nutrition and Physical Activity policy. Other notable changes to improve wellness in the worksite included implementing a healthy snack program, providing nutrition education for employees, and developing walking route maps.
After just a few months of working with SHIP, the CCFSA developed a worksite wellness policy. The policy demonstrates the organizations commitment to healthy eating and physical activity, and it provides a foundation to support for the efforts that are being made to improve health of employees. The policy encourages employees to eat well and outlines the goals of the healthy snack program and encourages employees to bring healthy food options for meetings and when sharing food with co-workers. The policy also encourages employees to get up and move before and after work or during break times.
A healthy snack program was developed to support worksite wellness. Wellness committee members take turns buying and stocking healthy snacks that can be purchased by employees for a nominal charge. The fee helps cover the cost of the snacks and enables the program to be sustainable. SHIP funded the initial start-up cost of implementing the program, but now the snacks have paid for the ongoing expenses.
After completing an employee assessment, the Wellness Committee determined that there was a need for nutrition education. CCFSA has contacted with the local Hy-Vee store Dietitian to provide a comprehensive training program that will provide a baseline understanding of nutrition concerns to help control their weight.
To help encourage walking, CCFSA mapped outdoor walking routes of varying distances. The routes will help employees determine how far they can walk during their allotted break times. Indoor routes were also mapped to help during inclement weather and to provide opportunities to those need a controlled environment. In addition to walking routes, employees are encouraged to deliver mail, rather than using mailboxes and to stand up while talking on the phone.
The addition of a Wellness Policy will support the wellness efforts that are being implemented, and it will help keep CCFSA on the right track toward having healthier, productive employees.