May 13 marked the Capital Area Wellness Coalition’s second annual Well Done! Awards, which recognize and bring to the forefront wellness activities taking place at worksites, among community groups, and through the leadership of unsung wellness heroes. Ten nominations were submitted in the following three categories:
∎ Sanel Auto Parts (Automotive Supply Associates)
∎ Trial Courts Call Center (Walking Wall Program)
Community Wellness Effort:
∎ Friends of the Merrimack River Greenway Trail (FMRGT)
∎ Riverbend Community Mental Health (InSHAPE Program)
∎ Mike Loomis (NH Department of Administrative Services)
∎ Henniker Lion’s Club
∎ Robin Wirbal (City of Concord)
∎ Stacy Luke (Merrimack County Conservation District)
∎ Trieste Philbrook (Concord Family YMCA)
∎ Hannah Millon-Garvey (Delhaize America/Concord Hannaford)
And the winners are (drum roll, please): Sanel Auto Parts, Friends of the Merrimack River Greenway Trail and Robin Wirbal.
Sanel Auto Parts: In response to several shock claims (most of which were related to lifestyle choices) to their health insurance plan, Sanel Auto Parts established a Wellness Committee in 2010 to take a proactive approach to wellness for their employees. The Committee created a Wellness program that offered onsite smoking cessation support (the workplace is now smoke-free), biometric screenings, a Couch-to-5K program, and numerous health related workshops (e.g. heart disease, healthy eating, stress management, stretching and mindfulness). The impacts of this program have been far reaching, as more than 525 employees in three states have benefited.
Friends of the Merrimack River Greenway Trail: The FMRGT is a volunteer run effort to establish a 15-mile shared-use trail along the Merrimack River traversing through Concord. The trail will have a wide impact by providing access to the natural environment; it will encourage a healthier, more active community; and it will provide alternative transportation options in Concord. Since 2012, volunteers have raised more than $160,000 through grants and donations from local businesses and inpiduals, but they still need your help! If you would like to get involved, visit their website at mrgt.org.
Robin Wirbal: Wirbal runs the Wellness program for the city of Concord, where she has impacted countless city employees through her enthusiasm and drive. She has orchestrated more than a dozen courses and services, including: healthy eating, cooking, stress reduction, blood pressure and cholesterol checks, sun safety, cold and flu prevention, weight loss and various exercise classes. More than 450 employees have participated in these programs, including Wirbal herself, who has led the program by example through personal weight loss, healthy eating and exercise.
Congratulations to all the winners and nominees for their contribution to increased wellness in the Capital Area!
The Capital Area Wellness Coalition coordinates community resources and builds partnerships to create a culture of healthy living for everyone. The coalition meets monthly on the second Wednesday at 8 a.m. at the Center for Health Promotion, 49 S. Main St. For more information, visit capwellness.org.