‘The big thing for us is to give people something they can actually use’
Michelle Strutzenberger

Sarina Ram says she’s happy to see that a posAbilities employee wellness program that’s been running full-steam for about a year is striking a chord with staff.

“There’s been a positive response. (Staff members) appreciate it,” Sarina, a member of the committee that oversees the program, admitting the committee wasn’t sure what kind of interest they would get.

The wellness group meets monthly to review current initiatives and discuss new ones to pilot.

Their projects are geared to promoting not only physical but also mental, emotional, social and even financial health.

A wellness fair they put on last year saw a lot of interest, and is likely to take place again this year, says Sarina.


The committee has also arranged for a corporate discount with YYoga, as well as organizes the participation of a posAbilities team in the annual Vancouver Sun Run.

Two posAbilities staff, Sarina (left) and Louise, at last year's wellness fair.


Committee member Dan Volbek heads up both a music drop-in session and posAbilities volleyball team that plays in local beach and in-door leagues.

And the list goes on.

“We always have a bunch of different initiatives running at the same time, and so far each of them has been successful in a huge way,” says Sarina.

The group is also looking to launch a variety of new projects, including a quarterly competition — Sarina suggests it may be a walk-a-thon — between individuals in posAbilities programs and the programs themselves.

The committee is also exploring whether discount transit fares can be arranged for staff.

Sarina notes all the initiatives come out of a survey that was completed of staff to identify what they wanted in the wellness program.

“The big thing for us is to give people something that they would actually use, which is why we do a survey. We collect data from the different programs, and from all levels, (including) casual, part-time, full-time staff, supervisors and team leaders, and then we look at the big picture and figure out how to break it down in a logical, attainable kind of way,” she says.

She adds the group is hoping for “nothing but higher rates and responses in the year to come.”

“We will be working as a team to ensure all members of the posAbilities organization are aware of the initiatives that are available to them and are aware that their feedback drives this program,” she says.

— More to Come

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