July 24th, 2014
The Lake Sunapee Region has a new community-wide initiative for improved personal wellness, stemming from a 2012 anonymous $700,000 gift to New London Hospital (NLH). The unknown donor requested that the funds "be used for improving the health of the community and the patients served by the hospital."
Says NLH CEO and President Bruce King, "A special committee of the hospital's Board of Trustees determined that the most appropriate and impactful use of the gift to fulfill the donor's wishes would be to develop a community wellness initiative for the region." To that end, in 2013 a Strategic Planning Committee was formed, comprised of 15 community leaders who agreed to work together to develop this initiative. Committee members include representatives from local businesses, education, health care, government, and nonprofits that work with various age groups, from youth to seniors.
Today, the result of the committees' passion and dedication is The Wellness Connection: For a Healthy Lake Sunapee Region, whose mission is to provide Lake Sunapee Region communities with a sustainable and collaborative long-term plan that measurably improves health and wellness. The Wellness Connection will bring people together to create environments where we live, work and play that help make healthy choices the easy choices. It will:
- Increase effectiveness of regional employer wellness programs by creating a network of local businesses who work together to maximize expertise and resources to develop a healthy workforce.
- Increase public awareness of and participation in personal behaviors that improve health outcomes.
- Increase, align, and enhance efforts of local organizations and individuals who are already working to improve healthy eating and active living behaviors.
The Wellness Connection continues to be guided by an Executive Steering Committee as well as by NLH staff members including Lauren Conkey, Wellness Program Director. "Although the hospital is excited to lead the way, it is our hope that this will become a community-driven effort. We are starting small and hope to grow our initiative over time, creating a culture of wellness in the Lake Sunapee Region."
For more information or to get involved in The Wellness Connection, contact Lauren Conkey at 603.526.5227 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.newlondonhospital.org/wellnessconnection.