Updated: Nov 21, 2020
Engaging your Community in Wellness at Home is important because:
20% of all working-age adults in Canada, aged 25-64 and 28% of seniors aged 65 and over, have at least one disability, respectively
6.2 million Canadians have at least one of the four most common disabilities, such as pain, flexibility issues, mobility issues, or mental health, with the remainder of the demographics suffering from issues relating to sight, learning, dexterity, developmental, hearing and memory loss
59% of all working-age adults have a disability while being employed, of which 1.6 million disabled Canadians are unable to afford required medical devices or medication to get better
(Source: Statistics Canada, 2017)
Well-Being does not just end within the limits of design, but it requires the support of a socio-economic environment to make it sustainable.
For example, a workplace that provides medical coverage on a wide variety of health care needs is significant because it allows the individual to get access to wellness resources easier than someone without. This logic also extends to the social fabric of a community whereby a strong support system of individuals makes wellness sustainable and accessible for everyone, not just for the few who can afford it.
Inclusive well-being by design should therefore be strived for in all communities, because no limits, social or physical, should ever be placed on an individual’s right towards their own well-being, be it their “race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, age, sex, disability status, sexual orientation, [or] gender identity” (WELL v2, 2018, pg. 234).
Such sentimentality will empower society as a whole as we collectively fight against the COVID-19 pandemic together.
Here are therefore 6 DIY Hacks to Engage your Community in Wellness at Home (from a communal to an individual level) within a reasonable price range:
1) Familiarize yourself with the WELL v2 Building Standard
Read up on WELL v2, what it is about, and what it means for the health and well-being of spaces. A summary of these topics can be found in this article here.
Furthermore, to learn more about the entire WELL v2 Building Standard, click here.
2) Compare your Health Benefits to WELL’s recommendations
When our work places and institutions “provide access to essential health services, screenings and assessments and offer on-demand health services” (WELL v2, 2018), our health and well-being becomes easier to achieve and maintain.
According to the Community Concept of WELL v2, the following are some of the many health benefits that a work place should have in order to support our well-being. How many of the following does your current workplace provide you with, and which ones could you do or do without?
"Mental health services and restorative programs
Sick or paid leave
Short- or long-term or disability for mental health needs
Workplace that provide managers on mental health training annually, on de-stressing, recognizing their mental conditions, and support for a work-life balance
Stress management plan by employment
20 PTO days minimum per calendar year
Health benefits subsidized by 50% - medical, dental, vision, mental health, substance use, sexual and reproductive health services
Health risk assessments subsidized
Seasonal flu vaccination subsidized
Maternity / Paternity leave
Childcare assistance and subsidies for off-site child care
Elder care support services
Paid leave for the care of a spouse, domestic partner, child, dependent, or significant other
Bereavement support and leave
Business travel support
Part time flexibility
Work from home flexibility"
(Source: WELL v2, 2018)
3) Design your Home for Venustas / Beauty / Delight, for everyone to enjoy
The idea of Beauty, or Delight, in a space can be traced back to Vitruvius, an architect, engineer and author of the 1st century BC, who wrote Ten Books on Architecture and is often regarded as the oldest architectural theory books from Antiquity.
In it, he describes that spaces should achieve the triad of firmitas, utilitas, and venustas or firmness, commodity and delight), in which Order, Arrangement, Proportion and Fitness (sizing with respect to a component’s function) are the key components that work together to create Venustas / Beauty / Delight in a space.
We can therefore achieve Beauty in our spaces at home by applying these principles. By celebrating art and culture via the choices of our furnishings, art pieces, plant decor, music, to even the presentation of our meals, a space can transcend into a place, one in which our family, friends, and ourselves, can be proud of and to enjoy.
4) Contribute to the Health & Well-being of your Peers
If health and well-being is something that you are passionate about, consider sharing your knowledge and interest with a community online, either through Zoom, Facebook Groups, Instagram, etc.
In doing so, you are also staying socially connected with others when quarantine is required, and will thus benefit both you and your mentee’s mental well-being as well.
Some ideas to form group training online include:
Physical exercise at Home
Art / Painting
Other skills-related activities
5) Obtain your CPR and First Aid certifications online
Emergencies can happen at any time in life, and so it is better to be prepared than not.
Take a course online to learn CPR (Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation) and in First Aid. Be sure to get recertified every year for the former, and every three years for the latter.
6) Equip your Home with a First Aid Kit
Cost: $30 to $70
A first aid kit is a box which contains supplies that can help treat minor injuries to potentially life-threatening emergencies. Useful to have, it should be stored in an easy-to-access location in the house where anyone can get to.
According to the Canadian Red Cross, a basic First Aid Kit should contain several, if not all of the following items:
“Emergency telephone numbers for EMS/9-1-1, your local poison control centre, and your personal doctors
Home and office phone numbers for family members, friends, or neighbours who can help
Sterile gauze pads (dressings) in small and large squares to place over wounds
Roller and triangular bandages to hold dressings in place or to make an arm sling
Adhesive bandages in assorted sizes
Instant ice packs
Disposable non-latex gloves, such as surgical or examination gloves
Flashlight, with extra batteries in a separate bag
Antiseptic wipes or soap
Pencil and pad
Barrier devices, such as a pocket mask or face shield
Coins for pay phone
Canadian Red Cross first aid manual”
(Source: Canadian Red Cross, 2020)