As the cost of health care continues to rise, it is in the employee’s and the organization’s best interest to focus on the prevention of various health problems and diseases. Starting a wellness program doesn’t have to be solely for large organizations with heavy funding. Here are some ideas to implement as you start a wellness program:
- Offer on-site flu shots. Most big name pharmacies partner with local employers and will even bill the employee’s health insurance plan for the cost of the shot.
- Work with local gyms to see if you can get a corporate discount for employees. You can also offer a health club reimbursement program. If you have the funding and space, build an on-site gym.
- Offer healthy vending machine options. I would not recommend taking away all junk food options because that will make your employee population angry. But, you may think about offering a ratio of 75% healthy and 25% not so healthy.
- Sponsor sports activities, like local bike and running races. You could also sponsor a park district volleyball, softball team, etc. Pay the entry fees for employees and family.
- Offer fresh fruit in the breakroom. This doesn’t have to be daily…it could be once per week or even once per month.
- Initiate activity competitions, like step contests. Give everyone who signs up a free pedometer and offer prizes for the top three walkers.
- Bring health-related speakers on-site for “lunch and learns.” Many insurance providers offer this service for free. Take advantage of it. You can poll the employees to see what topics they are most interested in.
- Fund on-site wellness screenings that test for high blood pressure, blood glucose, cholesterol, and BMI.
- Ask for volunteers who enjoy certain outdoor activities to lead a group and plan outings. For example, there could be walking groups, hiking groups, golf groups, and so on.
- Encourage walking breaks throughout the day as a stress management technique. Make it a normal occurrence to have “walking meetings.”
- Purchase standing desks for those who request them.
- Offer healthy options like salad and fruit when catering office breakfasts and lunches. Order sauces (like mayo) on the side for sandwiches.
- Make a blood pressure cuff available for employees to use so they can monitor their pressure throughout the day.
- Start a wellness committee to focus on health-related fun events.
What are some additional ideas for health and wellness program activities?