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Leading Healthy Change in the Places We Work

With employment rates over 90% in our community, many of us are spending significant time and energy in our place of work or engaged in work related activity.

Approximately 50% of our waking hours in fact.

It stands to reason then that workplace environments can significantly influence our health and well-being.


Workplaces who make healthy food and beverage choices available or who provide showers and secure bike facilities to make active transport easier, or who have strategies in place to develop a positive mental health and cultural environment are all examples of workplaces prioritising staff health and well-being.

For business-owners and employers, there is plenty of research to confirm workplaces that support staff health and well-being have the potential to increase productivity, reduce absenteeism cost, increase staff satisfaction and improve staff morale.

As an employer, who wouldn’t want these things for their staff and business?


Late last year, Healthy Families Whanganui Rangitīkei Ruapehu supported local businesses New World Ohakune and Lilburn Transport to achieve bronze level WorkWell accreditation in recognition of the measures they are putting in place to support employee health and well-being.

Lilburn Transport managing director Robbie Lilburn and his staff launched WorkWell in their business in late 2016, “our staff are our biggest assets, looking after the health and wellbeing of our people is really important, without them we don’t have a business” says Robbie.


With another three local organisations also lining up for bronze accreditation, and many other local businesses doing great things to support the health of their staff, we can clearly see a momentum building.  

Healthy Families Whanganui Rangitīkei Ruapehu manager Debbie-Jane Viliamu congratulates Lilburn Transport and New World Ohakune for their leadership in workplace well-being.


“With the hours we spend at work, the workplace has huge potential to influence our health and wellbeing. Businesses like Lilburn and New World Ohakune, who prioritise the health of employees, are at the leading edge of healthy change across our community where we live, learn, work and play”.

Many corporate organisations include contractual health benefits such as free eye testing, a set dollar figure per annum that can be used towards gym membership or fitness equipment and similar activities.

Other workplaces sponsor or support workplace sports teams to enter in local competitions or tournaments, and all of these are a great start. However, in order to understand the health and well-being needs of staff the best thing to do is ask them.

There are a number of great tools and frameworks for implementing workplace wellness strategies in your business or organisation.


Check out www.wellplace.nz or www.good4work.nz and join the movement to create a culture where the healthy choice is the easy choice where you work. 

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