By: Nancy Norris—
The 2015 Indiana Health and Wellness Summit was held on October 8th in Indianapolis. Eight companies from Muncie Delaware County (see list below) were recognized and received awards for meeting the criteria from the Wellness Council of Indiana to be wellness certified.
According to America’s Health Rankings conducted by the United Health Foundation, Indiana ranks 41st out of 50 states for health. When business leaders look at where to locate good jobs, the health status of their potential employees is a key factor is the decision-making process since health care costs will be one the top five costs in their budgets. We must get our quality of life measurements up and the Indiana Healthy Community Initiative provides the strategy and structure to help organizations step up and make a difference.
Muncie-Delaware County is working to become the first county in the state to be wellness certified. Three individuals are working hard to make this happen: Jane Ellery, Assistant Manager of Wellness Management at Ball State, Nathan Taylor, Wellness Coordinator at Youth Opportunity Center and Nancy Norris, HR Director at Muncie-Delaware County Chamber of Commerce.
Nathan says: “It’s so exciting to see more companies in our community getting recognized for their workplace wellness efforts…and there are more in the pipeline so this number will grow still more next year as we seek to apply for the Indiana Healthy Communities award from the state chamber. There are great things happening in our community and a lot of people working to improve Muncie and Delaware County.”
“We have great people in our community who are working hard to support the wellbeing of the local workforce, and it has been fun to watch employee wellbeing initiatives emerge and evolve throughout our county. I am very impressed with the talent and leadership that this group of wellness and human resource professionals displays everyday. Congratulations to each and every one of these companies,” says Ellery.
Companies must first work toward attaining the Three Star Level. At this level, companies must show that they can provide a blueprint and strategy for a successful wellness initiative in the workplace. Many organizations with a wellness initiative may have many of the requirements completed already. Local companies receiving the Three Star Level are: MutualBank, MITS, Open Door Health Services, and Muncie-Delaware County Chamber of Commerce/Horizon Convention Center.
Once a company has achieved a Three Star Level, they can work toward the Four Star Level. This level is designed to strategically evaluate, plan, and analyze the growth of your wellness initiative. The goal is to move the needle for wellness in your organization and the wellness council provides processes that can guide your company through the various components of a successful and sustainable initiatives. IU Health-Ball Memorial Hospital recently completed the requirements for the Four Star Level.
Three local companies were recently awarded the highest level of certification, the Five Star Level: Ball State University, Ontario Systems, and Youth Opportunity Center. Organizations achieving the Five Star Level are recognized as elite organizations that have made employee well-being a priority in the workplace. These organizations have experienced noteworthy growth in the evolution of their wellness initiative and embrace it as part of the business strategy.
If your company is interested in working toward this designation for next year, please feel free to contact Jane Ellery (firstname.lastname@example.org,) Nathan Taylor (email@example.com) or Nancy Norris (firstname.lastname@example.org). They will be happy to discuss the program with your group and help your organization get involved! We want to see the 3 and 4 Star Companies make the next level of recognition, and we would love to help an additional 10 companies start or expand their employee wellness efforts in order for the county to be wellness certified.
About the Wellness Council of Indiana
The Wellness Council of Indiana is a 501(c)(3) organization and the only statewide group specifically dedicated to worksite wellness in Indiana. Organized as a volunteer based association in 1988 and acquired by the Indiana Chamber of Commerce in 2011, the Wellness Council of Indiana has grown to be one of the largest state councils in the United States.
The Wellness Council serves as the clearing house and resource center on corporate health promotion for Indiana They assist members by providing tools to allow their wellness programs to grow. The council believes that the quality of life of any community is measured, to a large degree, by the health of its people. It is their vision to make Indiana a model state by improving the quality of life of its employees.
Nancy Norris is HR Director for the Muncie-Delaware County Chamber of Commerce