Employee Wellness Week 2 – 6 July


It’s Employee Wellness Week in South Africa. From 2 – 6 July South Africans are encouraged to participate in wellness within their workplace.

How important is wellness at work? Extremely! With an estimated 56% of women and 29% of men being overweight and obese in South Africa, corporate wellness should be a top priority at all organisation’s. Further shocking facts show that 1 in 3 men and 1 in 4 women in South Africa will develop a heart condition before the age of 60 and heart disease and stroke are the biggest non-infectious killers in our country.

Did you know that up to 80% of these are due to our lifestyles and behaviour? Which means that 80% of premature deaths can be prevented merely through few small lifestyle changes.

The question remains, why should employees feel the need to over work themselves to gain approval from higher ranks within the organisation? A physically, mentally, and emotionally well employee is a productive employee. A healthy work atmosphere also enables positive morale and job satisfaction.

What does this mean for our generation? And what does this say about the lifestyles that South Africans are currently leading?

Employee Wellness Week will focus on wellness in the workplace and encouraging all personnel to follow a healthy lifestyle, even at work. Investing in employees’ health through Employee Wellness Programmes (EWP) is increasingly being recognised as a value-add for both the company and its people, with companies benefiting through reduced absenteeism, improved productivity and lower medical costs.

Individual benefits are risk reduction in heart disease and strokes, and other occupational conditions such as stress related illnesses, knowing your numbers and what puts you at risk. This means we train a generation to value wellness within their workplace and perpetuate the same at home. In some way we hope to influence healthy behaviour of South Africans across the country by highlighting the importance of such wellness programmes and responsibility placed on businesses toward their employees.

The Heart and Stroke Foundation South Africa is also promoting Employee Wellness Week from 2 July – 6 July to companies in need of health risk assessments and health talks. We also offer 5 quick tips to improve your health at work:

  1. Step up! Opt for the stairs instead of the elevator – it’s a great way to get in shape
  2. Experience yoga, it helps with focus, flexibility, and posture.
  3. Stay hydrated! Drink at least 8 glasses of water a day.
  4. Snack well! Choose to snack on fruit or yoghurt during your work day instead of sweets and chocolates.
  5. Laugh! Don’t allow work to become mundane, take time to share a joke with a colleague or laugh at an email. Laughter is a great stress reliever.

The HSFSA believes that the core objectives for Employee Wellness Week is to encourage employees to live a healthy lifestyle, provide corporations with information to improve the health of their staff and for HSFSA to reach the community.

Employees are the backbone of any organisation and if they are in top shape mentally, emotionally as well as physically, it would benefit both the organisation and the employees to reach goal of productivity.