LEWISTON – The city of Lewiston is the recipient of a Healthy Androscoggin Certificate of Leadership award for promotion of good health for its employees. The recognition, bestowed by Healthy Androscoggin, a state Bureau of Health Program, was the fifth consecutive annual award that the city.

Denis R. Jean, human resources director, who accepted the award on behalf of the city at the Feb. 12 Chamber of Commerce breakfast, said, “This award demonstrates that not only are Lewiston employees appreciating and benefiting from our wellness initiatives, but Lewiston’s efforts are also being recognized by the community as a pacesetter for healthy living.”

The mission of Healthy Androscoggin is to reduce chronic disease by reducing tobacco use and promoting healthy behaviors related to nutrition and physical activity through comprehensive community-based prevention.

Jessica Balkun, assistant director of Healthy Androscoggin, said, “The city of Lewiston’s wellness program is truly on the cutting edge. The program addresses social norms and behavior change through a variety of mediums.

“Not only do they offer quality educational programs such as a Lunch-and-Learn series, but they also have policies in place to support the healthy behaviors they teach.

“There is no sense in educating employees without enabling them to make the right choice. The city of Lewiston’s Wellness Program is an example of an effective way to change social norms and behavior.”

This year’s leadership award placed Lewiston in the “Excellence” category with recognition for the municipality’s smoke-free workplace, encouragement of physical activity and promotion of healthy eating.

The city’s Wellness Works Program, highlighted by Wellness Chairwoman Sandra Prince in this year’s award application, focused on healthy choices.

Lewiston’s point accumulation wellness program enables employees to make positive lifestyle choices that result in various incentives rewards. The city’s commitment to promotion of healthy living includes smoking cessation, weight loss and physical activity programs/opportunities and a Lunch and Learn series where various foods and healthy choices are highlighted.

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