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Wellness Training for Lay Leaders

The vision statement for the Human Services element of the River Valley RC regional plan states: Promote safe and healthy communities by maintaining infrastructure, supporting health and public services, and encouraging walkable development patterns that promotes healthy lifestyles for its citizens. Several activities contained in the work program of the regional plan have sought to address this vision in a variety of ways, from providing information and assistance to educational materials to developing programs on health and wellness to identifying lay leaders to address specific projects. These type activities were identified in the RVRC Work Program adopted in 2013, and extend education programs and resources on a regional basis, beyond the capacity of paid AAA staff.

WellCare, a provider of Medicare and Medicaid insurance programs, made a community grant in 2016 to the River Valley Regional Commission/Area Agency on Aging (AAA) to provide evidenced-based wellness programs, i.e., services or programs with proven success, to seniors and persons with disabilities. In the first few months of the program, thirty-eight persons attended the Chronic Disease Self-Management, Diabetes Self-Management and Matter-of-Balance Fall Prevention Programs in three area counties. Volunteer lay leaders who attended are now successfully presenting these programs in the targeted counties. AAA staff hope these are the first of many lay volunteers presenting peer-to-peer wellness education and training across the region.


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