As I’ve noted in previous posts, the Department of Correction is a model agency when it comes to wellness activities. They outdid themselves once again at their 2013 Wellness Field Day, held on May 6 in Norfolk. Every year, the Department celebrates Correction Officer and Employees Week with events that recognize the hard work DOC employees do all year long. In the past, employees were given the opportunity to participate in a run/walk event, which was always a huge success. This year, however, with the support of WellMASS, the DOC Wellness Committee decided to go one step further and turn the run/walk into an entire day devoted to wellness.
I was included in much of the planning process, which started months in advance and involved a lot of careful preparation and decision-making. All of the Committee’s hard work paid off, as the event was well-attended, well-received, and incorporated and encouraged wellness at every available opportunity. While physical wellness was spotlighted at the run/walk and games such as wiffle ball and volleyball, it was only one piece of the puzzle. Employees were also able to test their wellness knowledge during a lunchtime wellness trivia competition (hosted by GIC Program Manager Dana Bushell and myself); showcase their hidden vocal talents during a Karaoke contest; and engage in camaraderie in a scavenger hunt or one of the many other team-building activities. Each event attracted employees of all ages and job functions, from Correction Officers to administrative staff. Morale and team spirit were high, as participants represented their institution or division, with the winning institution, MCI-Norfolk, taking home a trophy and year-long bragging rights.
I had a lot of fun at the Wellness Field Day, and, judging from the smiling faces I saw all day long, DOC employees did as well. I am sure that participants walked away from the day with a little more knowledge of and appreciation for wellness, both physical and emotional. Hosting a yearly event such as a Wellness Day is a great way to boost employee morale and encourage healthy behaviors all year long.