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United Way grant helps Rowan Vocational Opportunities improve health-wellness program

Rowan Vocational Opportunities was able to enhance its health and wellness program after receiving a $2,500 Community Initiatives Grant from the Rowan County United Way.
Rowan Vocational Opportunities, which trains people with disabilities, is one of 15 United Way member agencies. Earlier this year the United Way awarded $50,000 to 11 area nonprofits.
The grants make it possible for agencies to provide services that address issues identified in the Rowan County Health and Human Needs Assessment Survey.
The survey is conducted every five to six years.
Rowan Vocational Opportunities was able to use the grant to buy two automated external defibrillators.
One-third of the consumers and staff of Rowan Vocational Opportunities are over 50 years old and many have acute or chronic illnesses such as obesity, diabetes and heart disease.
The staff at Rowan Vocational Opportunities is training to use the defibrillators and have all been certified in first-aid, CPR, bloodborne pathogens and seizure management.
“By implementing our Health and Wellness Program, we believe that it will help decrease health related absenteeism, lower heath care costs, help combat chronic diseases and some acute illnesses, while also encouraging our consumers and staff to adopt a more active healthy lifestyle,” said John Williams, executive director of Rowan Vocational Opportunities.
The agency has received some donated exercise equipment to help build its health and wellness plan. The agency is also looking into creating an exercise track in the near future.
The agency is seeking additional donations of new or slightly used exercise equipment or supplies.
“We are really pleased to be able to accelerate our efforts to provide better service and support to both our consumers and staff as a result of the United Way’s assistance,” Williams said.
“The long term benefits of this program are unquestionably clear: healthy, happy, enthusiastic consumers and staff make for a safer, more productive, workforce,” he said.
For more information about the agency or the program contact Williams or Special Projects Coordinator Wilson Cherry at 704-633-6223 or Wilson@rowanvocopp.org

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