United Way listed among Central Florida’s Healthiest Employers


2013-Wordpress---OBJ-Healthiest-EmployersOrlando Business Journal has named Heart of Florida United Way as a finalist in the 2013 Healthiest Employers in Central Florida small companies division (two to 99 employees).

In February 2013, HFUW sponsored a Weight Watchers at Work program and supplemented 50% of the membership fee for participating staff. The top two “losers” were reimbursed for the entire membership. During the 12-week program, participants learned more about healthy eating, portion control and meal tracking.

The highlight of the program was the HFUW Biggest Loser Competition where participating employees competed against one another to lose the greatest percentage of weight – putting the wellness knowledge they’d gained into practice. This eight-week competition included weekly weigh-ins, fitness sessions, lunch-and-learns and a kickball tournament with the local Boys & Girls Club. As a result of those initiatives, 42 staff members lost a total of 356 pounds and gained increased morale, team cohesiveness and camaraderie.

“As with every company success, there is a team of hard working people with a leader that allows them the latitude to implement and drive results,” said Jill Grevi, Senior Vice President and CFO of Heart of Florida United Way. “Bob Brown (president and CEO of HFUW) has provided that type of leadership to the HFUW wellness committee.  Chaired by Natalie Thornhill-Brown, the committee has spent time planning meaningful activities to increase awareness and to promote better morale and camaraderie in the work place.”

HEALTHIEST EMPLOYERS FINALIST – Heart of Florida United Way

Type of business: Nonprofit organization

Top executive: Robert H. Brown, president and CEO

Employees: 67 full time

Website: www.hfuw.org

Wellness leader: Natalie Thornhill-Brown

Notable wellness success: We’ve had a six-week Biggest Loser competition and a 12-week Weight Watchers program. The company supplemented half of the membership fee.

Unique wellness approach: We focus on providing information. Nothing is forced — it is all to give them the opportunity to make changes.

Annual wellness program cost: Less than $5,250.

Wellness program incentives offered: The Weight Watchers winners got their entire membership fee paid for. The Biggest Loser winning team received prizes and the individual winner got a trophy and other prizes. There are also prizes for participation like gift cards and water bottles.

Employee wellness program participation: Almost 100 percent.

How we measure the program’s success: We track weight loss and attendance for events, and do surveys.

Factors with the most impact on our program: Education; not forcing members to participate; leadership support.

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