April 7 is World Health Day. It’s a great time to mobilize your employees around a cause and remind them of the importance of workplace wellness! We commemorate World Health Day on the World Health Organization’s (WHO) founding anniversary. Each year, WHO focuses on a specific health issue with worldwide implications.
In 2016, the theme was Beat Diabetes. Did you know?
- “About 350 million people worldwide have diabetes, a number likely to more than double in the next 20 years.”
- “In 2012, diabetes was the direct cause of 1.5 million deaths. More than 80% of diabetes deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries.”
- “Type 2 accounts for around 90% of all diabetes worldwide. Reports of type 2 diabetes in children have increased worldwide”
Diabetes is increasingly prevalent worldwide and harms families, businesses, and communities. Luckily, it’s preventable and treatable, and your company can help get the word out! WHO offers free materials such as free posters and useful fact sheets to help publicize the issue and even suggests ways to get involved with different audiences.
World Health Day is a perfect opportunity to re-focus supporting wellness in your workplace, partnering with local organizations and building community engagement against a common cause.
Read on to learn more about the benefits of celebrating World Health Day and how to celebrate it with your employees!
World Health Day: Step by Step
WHO’s blueprint for World Health Day participation includes these steps:
- Form a planning team.
Choose a leader to recruit employee volunteers. They can head up your planning process and coordinate events!
- Community outreach.
Contact local schools, nonprofits, media, other businesses and host a brainstorm meeting. How will you make a splash on World Health Day? Designate a point person to work with the planning team.
- Contact local health care experts.
Invite a panel to address the planning group and share information about how diabetes is affecting your community and what is needed to solve the problem.
- Plan events.
Work with local organizations to determine venues, agendas, and activities for April 7. Focus on reaching all community sectors! Don’t forget to serve healthy snacks and include music, humor, and other elements that inject a bit of fun without making light of a serious problem.
- Publicize – #Diabetes
Ask local media outlets to pitch in and build awareness about World Health Day, beating diabetes, and upcoming events. Use social media to augment their efforts, and suggest your partner organizations do the same.
Attach a face to your campaign — how is diabetes affecting your community? Are there individuals living with the disease who can share their experiences? What are they doing to eat healthy and physically active, for example?
The WHO website has many specific ideas for supporting World Health Day, from organizing parades or walks, to public workshops, to sporting event or concert fundraisers. The site also includes contact information for WHO staffers in case you need advice or suggestions.
Why Promote Wellness?
Supporting World Health Day enables you to draw community attention to a devastating illness and ways to combat it. In your company, it provides an opportunity to promote overall wellness benefits, highlight your wellness programs and focus attention on controlling Diabetes. Working together to support a cause engages workers and can build important community partnerships. Healthy, engaged workers are happier, more productive and the foundation of any successful business.
We wish you good health and a happy World Health Day!
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