Public Health – Community Wellness

What is Wellness?

Definition of Wellness

Wellness is an active process of becoming aware of and making choices toward a healthy and fulfilling life. Wellness is more than being free from illness; it is a dynamic process of change and growth.

“…a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being, and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”
– The World Health Organization

“a conscious, self-directed and evolving process of achieving full potential.”
– The National Wellness Institute

Why Wellness Matters
Maintaining an optimal level of wellness is absolutely crucial to live a higher quality life. Wellness matters. Wellness matters because everything we do and every emotion we feel relates to our well-being. In turn, our well-being directly affects our actions and emotions. It’s an ongoing circle. Therefore, it is important for everyone to achieve optimal wellness in order to subdue stress, reduce the risk of illness and ensure positive interactions.

Get informed on wellness

WHAT DO WE MEAN BY “COMMUNITY WELLNESS”?
by Nina Joy Lawrence, Anna Willman, Pat Omidian, Melinda Darer
July 15, 2016, Un-categorized
Community wellness is based on a public health approach with two assumptions. First, most illnesses are preventable, including various types of mental illness. Second, the community itself contains many solutions to its own health needs and already has many techniques to encourage resilience and wellness.

With minimal training, people can connect with their inner source of resilience.  With the right kind of attention, healing begins. We practice these skills.

Culturally-specific strategies enhance a community’s ability to recover.  To tap into this cultural wisdom, we identify those in the community who are already recovering and thriving.  We learn from them, adopt and adapt strategies, and help them share their experiences with others in their community.

Through our process, community members:

  • find the resilience to address problems
    improve community connections
    change how they face the stresses of daily life
    overcome creative blocks
    explore spiritual connections in their inner lives
    discover how they can be part of positive changes in the world
    To foster resilience and community engagement, Focusing Initiatives International:

Offers workshops on human development, including psycho-social wellness, healing from trauma, and coping with and reducing stress. We promote locally existing positive coping skills and wellness practices to create just and peaceful communities.
Mentors trainers throughout the world in Focusing and other processes that aid in self-reflection, communication, and greater listening skills, so that they can become more effective leaders and promote wellness, emotional safety, and human development in their own communities.
Provides technical assistance to individuals and organizations to help them design, establish, fund, and operate local programs and projects to promote human development.
Outcomes:

The success of our programs has been evaluated by two independent organizations and includes:

  • Reduced violence in families and schools
    Improvements in well being and physical health
    Reduced reliance on over-the-counter and illegal drugs and alcohol
    Increased capacity to facilitate peace and reconciliation
    Definition of Key Terms:

Focusing:

A practical way of helping people look inward and create an open internal space  that allows them to change the way they think and find new possibilities for positive solutions.

Psycho-social wellness:

  • Psycho = having to do with emotions and personality
    Social = rules and relations within a society, community or family
    Psycho-social Wellness = Refers to the dynamic relationship between psychological and social effects, each continually influencing the other

Resilience:

  • The ability to deal positively with problems and traumas in life.The ability to cope with problems by building on community and individual strengths and skills.

Health and Wellness Resource Links
https://svi.cdc.gov/map.aspx?txtzipcode=cdc&btnzipcode=Submit
https://svi.cdc.gov/index.html
https://www.cdc.gov/globalhealth/index.html
http://www.who.int/gho/map_gallery/en/
http://apps.who.int/globalatlas
http://outbreaks.globalincidentmap.com/