Our church has made a concerted effort to emphasize healthy living to our congregation in several ways. We have partnered with another church in our area to sponsor and host a Health and Wellness fair. We have made a conscious effort to utilize healthier snacks for our youth activities. The health and wellness information we receive through PHW is posted throughout the church and our Health Liaison does a tremendous job keeping our members aware of the information and training he is receiving through PHW. Our Pastors not only emphasize healthy lifestyles but work to be examples by exercising regularly and maintaining good eating habits.
One of the challenges we experience is helping our children make better food choices. We host an 8-week academic and enrichment program each summer attended by more than 65 elementary students from all over the city. Healthy living is one of the tenets of the program. We are always looking for new ways of teaching our children about the importance of developing a good health regiment now. Many of our students are first generation immigrants, often the primary translator for their family. Our goal is to help our children encourage their parents to make good health a family affair.
For congregations that wish to implement healthier practices, we suggest starting with improving the snack selections for activities; posting the information from PHW is very helpful as well. Exercising together can not only be rewarding but a lot of fun for all ages.
As part of our summer program, we provide breakfast snacks, lunch and afternoon snacks. We would like to use the PHW mini-grant to offer more fruits and vegetables for the summer program.
The success story above was submitted by Ronald Davis, PHW Liaison at Shalom Community Christian Church in Greensboro, and under the leadership of Pastor Dionne Cole. If your congregation would like to put your faith into action by prioritizing the health of your members, please visit the PHW website at www.healthandwholeness.org.
-Willona Stallings, PHW Program Coordinator
Partners in Health and Wholeness is an initiative of the North Carolina Council of Churches. PHW aims to connect health as a faith issue. Please visit our website to sign your personal pledge to be healthier, and to find out about grant opportunities for places of worship in NC.