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Let's Get it Started!

by The Sandbox Staff | September 20 2018

September always feels like such an optimistic, happy month as we start a new school year with fresh faces and fresh ideas. Amidst all of the craziness that this time of year can bring, it may be a challenge to think about what back-to-school means for your wellness program. Well, we’re here to help!

Resources on The Sandbox are filtered based on the SCHOOL model, which is a series of steps that will guide you through developing, initiating, evaluating and maintaining an employee wellness program. What are we waiting for? Let’s get started!

  • S—Structure of Leadership Support. Strong wellness programs often begin with strong, supportive leadership! Check out this resource around supporting effective leaders to build stronger teams or this article from the Harvard Business Review that outlines the hard return on employee wellness programs—you won't be disappointed!
  • C—Committee of Wellness. If your committee’s set up, you may be asking what’s next. Use the “smarty pants” template to plan, track and, ultimately, achieve your goals.
  • H—Health Assessments. OK, now let’s dig in and get some data! Think of anything from informal surveys to formal tests conducted by a health professional. In order to determine what your team needs, you need to know where your group stands. The Canadian Mental Health Association’s Mental Health Meter assesses different aspects of mental health, strives to help you better understand strengths and potential weaknesses and showcases how to effectively manage life’s ups and downs. It’s an easy resource to share with your colleagues!
  • O—Outline of Plan and Action. Everyone’s excited about your committee but let’s take a moment to create the details of a plan! Developing a healthy school policy is a good way to ensure the success of your program. The resources on this website are an excellent starting point to create your own workplace wellness policy.
  • O—Operation of Plan and Action. You’ve set the stage, done your planning and now you’re well underway. With the new Wellness Poster Series, touching upon every dimension of wellness, inspiration will pour out like water and you’ll be swimming in ideas in no time!
  • L—Learning and Progressing. By now, you’ve created your program and put some things into action. By taking the time to evaluate your plan, you’ll be ready to build on your success for next year. Reading the successes of other school staff wellness programs across Alberta may spark some new ideas for your program! Don’t forget to contribute your learnings too to show others what they can learn from you.

Hopefully these steps have helped you think about your wellness program and how to get things started for the new school year. How did you find these resources? Do you have some of your own to share? Check out The Sandbox forum to share your ideas and discover more back-to-SCHOOL wellness ideas for your workplace.

The Sandbox Staff

A varied and, frankly, dodgy bunch, The Sandbox Staff are a collection of superheroes tremendously fascinated by health and wellness, sand and boxes (not necessarily in that order).