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Weekly Wellness with the DCS Wellness Council_for open line

Weekly Word Game: Healthy Aging Month

healthy aging month_sept

Take a brain break during your workday to take on this week’s word game, search, puzzle, crossword, or quiz! Download this week’s “September Is Healthy Aging Month Wordfind” HERE.

 

 

Brain Games with WFHTN

word-scramble-game

 

Let’s give our brains a little workday break!

Please join WFHTN for a live word scramble BRAIN GAME.  

When: Thursday, September 23 from 1-1:15 PM Central  

Activity: WFHTN Wellness Coordinator, Lindsey, will be leading on WebEx.  Equipment Needed: You may want to have a pen/pencil and notepad close by for this activity! Join from this meeting link!  

GIVE YOUR BODY A BREAK WITH THESE WEEKLY WORKOUTS!  

YOGA FOR ALL: WEDNESDAYS AT 12-12:15 PM CENTRAL 

 Join us for a 15-minute live virtual seated yoga class HERE ON WEBEX each week (password: yoga) that is suitable for beginners & relaxing for all fitness levels. No special equipment or attire is needed - just a chair! **


This class is brought to you by volunteer Certified Yoga Teachers and State employees in partnership with Working for a Healthier TN. Note: Each class will be led by a different yoga instructor: Denise Galben (DHS), Kristina Giard-Bradford (TDH), Lara Gill (TDH) and Noel Marie Blackmire (TDOE). We hope you'll join us every Wednesday afternoon!  

DCS THURSDAY FITNESS BREAKS: FROM 11-11:15 AM CENTRAL

Give your body a break with the DCS Wellness Council every Thursday HERE ON TEAMS!

You can expect a livestream workout handpicked by the DCS Wellness Council members.   

LIVING WITH A CHRONIC CONDITION? 

Check out on of these available program to help you better manage your condition, whether arthritis, asthma, cancer, depression, diabetes, heart disease or obesity. 

For State health plan members: Consider "Disease Management Group Coaching." (Call ActiveHealth at 888-741- 3390 to see if you qualify!)  

For non-health plan members: Consider the "Living Well with Chronic Conditions" workshops with the Tennessee Department of Health. (For more information about this program, including how to sign up please contact Danielle.McCoy@tn.gov.)  

 

 

#WhyApply Day Coming Sept. 17

September is Tennessee’s College Application and Exploration Month. This fall, students across the state will be submitting college applications and celebrating their plans for the future.

To celebrate college application season and our students, the Tennessee Higher Education Commission  and the Tennessee Student Assistance Corporation are designating Sept. 17, 2021, as #WhyApply Day.  #WhyApply Day, a national celebration championed by the American College Application Campaign, celebrates the college application season by sharing supportive and motivating messages on social media about the importance of applying to college.

Join THEC/TSAC in participating by heading to your social media accounts and answering the question, “Why apply to college?”  Here’s how you can participate on social media: 

1.       Print a #WhyApply selfie printout or use a blank piece of paper with the hashtag #WhyApply on it 

2.       Write your response to the question “Why apply to college?” on the paper 

3.       Put on your college gear and take a photo with your #WhyApply statement  

4.       On Sept. 17, post your photo or statement to your personal or organization’s social media channels using the hashtags #WhyApply and #TNCollegeAppMonth.

We also welcome you to tag THEC/TSAC using our social media handle: @TNHigherEd.

Twitter: @TNHigherEd| Instagram: @tnhighered  

Share this opportunity with your team, students, and other professionals you work with. Together, we can inspire more students to apply to college during this challenging time.

 

 

Aug 2021 EoM

 

 

 

A Quick, Confidential Look at Your Mental Health

National Depression Screening Day is set for Thursday, October 7.  With the effects of the pandemic, many more Tennesseans than normal are self-reporting symptoms of depression.

Taking a quick and confidential screening is an easy way you can get an honest look at your current mental health and then connect with resources based on the results. 

The Tennessee Department of Mental Health and its partners at Mental Health America offer online screenings for depression and many other behavioral health concerns at this link: TN.gov/behavioral-health/screenings

 

 

Weekly Wellness with the DCS Wellness Council_for open line

JOIN YOUR COLLEAGUES FOR HEALTHIER LUNCH HABITS 

Don't miss your chance to join the DCS Wellness Council’s upcoming PACK YOUR LUNCH CHALLENGE (Monday, Sept. 13 through Friday, Sept. 24).  

The goal: Aim to pack your lunch each workday. (Download your “Lunch Packer Tracker” for the challenge HERE.)  

FIVE prizes for participating are up for grabs!  If you'd like to receive emails with challenge tips & reminders, please sign-up HERE. (Note: You do not have to sign-up to participate in this challenge.)  

WEEKLY WORD GAME: MENTAL HEALTH WORD SEARCH

 Take a brain break during your workday to take on this week’s word game, search, puzzle, crossword, or quiz!

Download this week’s “Mental Health” word search HERE.  


 LIVE STANDING CORE WORKOUT 

Ready for an activity break to help you feel energized and motivated? It’s time for the next LIVE Workout with Working for a Healthier Tennessee!  

When: Tuesday, September 14 from 9:30-9:45 a.m. Central/10:30-10:45 a.m. Eastern. 

Workout: WFHTN Wellness Coordinator, Kayla, will be leading a standing core workout for ALL fitness levels. 

Attire: Anything you can move in! 

Equipment Needed: None. 

** Please sign this digital waiver prior to the live workout.** 

Join from this meeting link!  

suicide_prevention_month_news_image

Take a moment to learn more about the “The Role of Co-Workers in Preventing Suicide” in honor of National Suicide Prevention Month (September). 

And be sure to join the next #4Mind4Body webinar on “Suicide Prevention” on Thursday, September 16. (Pre-registration required.) 

 

 

 

A Heartfelt Note After the  Floods

I wanted to highlight how amazing DCS is.  The Northwest Region was hit hard by the flooding a couple of weeks ago. We lost our Humphreys County office to the flood, but even more tragically, we had three employees who lost their homes and everything they own. 

The DCS community has pitched in with donations to help the three employees offset their losses -- an effort that has brought in over $2,000.  The donations have been coming in from employees statewide, and the help continues to arrive every day.  

Meantime, our staff have also shown up to help with the cleanup efforts.

 I am in awe of how much compassion is spread across this organization. 

It’s truly made up of people who are in service of others, and it shows. 

-- Rebekah Bowlin

 

Safe2

TLC for DCS Kids in Dickson

In desperate need of a bit of TLC, the visitation rooms at the Dickson County DCS office received just that when the Craig Morgan Foundation and volunteers from Cross Point church showed up! 

With a heart not only for the children and families of Dickson Co, but the workers who give so much of their time, these two groups joined forces to make the visitation rooms, a comfortable and cozy space that children of all ages won’t mind coming to.  

The Craig Morgan Foundation funded the project and Crosspoint Volunteers created these cozy rooms. This is just one of the many things they have done for Dickson County DCS…and the staff in Dickson Co and surrounding areas could not be more grateful! 

We all have the same purpose, to help the children and families in this community, and together we make that happen!

-- Donna Lorhorn

 

 

 

 

uso-run for the brave 5k 2021-medal

Run for the Brave

Please join Tennessee Government Management Institute (TGMI) in supporting the military and their families by participating in a virtual 5k race any time September 1-6, 2021. 

This virtual race event is hosted by the USO who serves our military service members and their families.  

The USO Run for the Brave 5k (2021) virtual race can be worked on a little bit everyday Sept. 1 - 6 or can be completed during one occurrence during any of these days… the choice is completely yours! 

Please check out the attached flyers for additional information, including to join the TN State Government race team.  If you’d rather not run but wish to support by donating to USO programs for our military service members and their families, please check out the TN State Government’s page.    

Let’s salute our military service members and their families for their service and sacrifice for all of us and our great nation!  Thank you for your volunteer spirit and your service to our great state and great nation.  

 

 

 

Pack Your Lunch Challenge

 

DCS’ PACK YOUR LUNCH CHALLENGE IS COMING!

Join us in practicing healthier lunch habits in this 2-week challenge!

The goal is simple - aim to pack your lunch each workday.

Starts Monday, Sept. 13 

FIVE prizes for participating are up for grabs!  

If you'd like to receive emails with challenge tips & reminders, please sign-up HERE. (Note: You do not have to sign-up to participate in this challenge.)  

 

 

Weekly Wellness with the DCS Wellness Council_for open line

WE’VE GOT GRAINS ON THE BRAIN  

Every September, we celebrate the goodness of whole grains! Whole Grains Month is a great time for everyone to get on the whole grains bandwagon.  Eating better is not an all-or-nothing choice. Every little improvement you make in your food helps—all year long.  

Be sure to check out this "Whole Grains Month" handout from WFHTN HERE and/or take on the “Guess the Grains” quiz.  

TAKE A BREAK WITH THESE WEEKLY WORKOUTS! 

 YOGA FOR ALL: WEDNESDAYS AT 12-12:15 PM CENTRAL  

Join us for a 15-minute live virtual seated yoga class HERE ON WEBEX each week (password: yoga) that is suitable for beginners & relaxing for all fitness levels. No special equipment or attire is needed - just a chair! 

**This class is brought to you by volunteer Certified Yoga Teachers and State employees in partnership with Working for a Healthier TN.

Note: Each class will be led by a different yoga instructor: Denise Galben (DHS), Kristina Giard-Bradford (TDH), Lara Gill (TDH) and Noel Marie Blackmire (TDOE). We hope you'll join us every Wednesday afternoon!  

DCS THURSDAY FITNESS BREAKS:FROM 11-11:15 AM CENTRAL 

Give your body a break with the DCS Wellness Council every Thursday HERE ON TEAMS! You can expect a livestream workout handpicked by your Wellness Council members.  

Wanna workout on your own? Try this “15-Minute Office Workout” from Stephen Flynn, Case Manager at Northeast Region, Sullivan County.

 

 

 

Post Adoption story

Why We Do the Work

One of the many services that our Post Adoption Unit provides is searching for birth relatives of individuals who were adopted in the state of Tennessee and helping them connect with each other.  This is a photo of a customer who sought our assistance in finding birth family when he was able to meet his biological siblings for the first time.  He wrote to the Program Specialist that managed his request:

“Just wanted to follow up with you. Thank you again so much for all your help. I made a trip to Tennessee this past weekend and met my sister and brother. It was an amazing adventure and all because of you. Thank you so much!!!”

 

- Lindsay Coleman

Census

The U.S. Census Bureau this week released 52 individual data profiles on America Counts highlighting the recent 2020 Census Redistricting Data (Public Law 94-171) Summary File release.

These sharable data-rich state profiles are available for all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and feature data visualizations that include population, housing, race, ethnicity, diversity and age data. Each profile provides key demographic characteristics of each state and county on one page.

If you want to go straight to Tennessee, here's the Volunteer State profile.

 

 

Collage Facebook Post

National Smile Week!

Thank you to all who celebrated “National Smile Week” with the DCS Wellness Council! Many of your showed off your smiles - capturing selfies and sharing about loved ones or things, pets, and/or activities that make YOU smile. Here are just a few of the photos you shared with us.  

Photos submitted by: Herbert A. Smith, Kristal Ray, Vicki Burton, Kara Williams, Kayla Faulkner, Stephen Flynn, Delora Ruffin, Mechele Porter, Shannon M. Patterson, John Wesley Strahlman III, Shayna Smith, Becky Partin, Magdalynn Head and Venus Singleton.   

Let's Make a Sandwich

Did you know that's it’s National Sandwich Month?

Take a brain break to complete this “Let’s Make a Sandwich” Word Scramble.

** Submit your completed crossword to dcswellness.council@tn.gov to see how you did! **  

September is National Yoga Month

Consider giving yoga a try with these free Yoga Video Resources in honor of National Yoga Month. 

Also, want to give a beginner-level, relaxing seated yoga class a try? Don't miss this 15-minute live virtual series each week. (No special equipment or attire is needed - just a chair!)  

WHEN: Wednesdays at 12-12:15 PM Central (Please note this change in time from previous months!)  

**Download your calendar appointment for every Wednesday in September HERE.** 
 

Farmers Market Week

YOUR FARM FRESH PHOTOS 

Thank you for celebrating National Farmers Market Week with the DCS Wellness Council!

Here are just a few of the farm fresh photos you shared with us. 

Photos submitted by: Cindy Armes, Shayna Smith, Shawna Bertram, Rena Seay, Jessica Harman, Lucy Hensley, Venus Singleton and Wayne Dawson.

 

 

   

Weekly Wellness with the DCS Wellness Council_for open line

**NEW** BREAKFAST CROSSWORD 

We all experience "morning madness" — whether it's a time crunch, picky eaters or kids without morning appetites, many things can make for a stressful morning. Breakfast, however, is really an important meal! 
 
In honor of the back-to-school season, take a brain break to complete this BREAKFAST CROSSWORD. ** Submit your completed crossword to dcswellness.council@tn.gov to see how you did!

LIVESTREAMED STRETCH 

Want to relieve your body aches and take a moment to de-stress?

Join us for a LIVE Workout with Working for a Healthier Tennessee (WFHTN)!  

  • Workout: LIVEstreamed Stretch 
  • Attire: Anything you can move in! 
  • Equipment Needed: None  

** Please sign this digital waiver prior to the live workout. ** 

To Join: Download your calendar appointment HERE.  

LET’S MOVE MORE!  

Join the DCS Wellness Council compete against other executive agencies in Working for a Healthier TN’s Move More Challenge from Monday, September 13 - Sunday, October 10! 

  • During registration, you will take a short quiz that will sort you into one of three fitness level groups. Each fitness level group will have weekly goals including a cardio, strength training, and stretching goal!
  •  Click HERE to register by Wednesday, September 8. 
  • As long as you complete two of the three goals each week, you will be placed into a prize drawing. One person from each fitness level group will win a Bluetooth speaker!  During the challenge you will receive weekly emails with tips and reminders. You will also have the option to opt in to a Microsoft Teams chat where  you can chat with your fellow participants. If you have any questions, email dcswellness.council@tn.gov!

 

 

National Night Out in Campbell County

National Night Out 2021 (2)

The DCS Campbell County Staff participated in a foster parent recruitment event at the 10th Annual Campbell County National Night Out.  Our staff also donated school supplies to hand out to kids as they prepare to return to school.  

Hats Off!

July 2021 Employees of the Month

Cue Up the DCS Brain Teasers

Word-Games

Take a brain break during your workday to take on this week’s word game, search, puzzle, crossword, or quiz!

Download this week’s spooky “Friday the Thirteenth” word game at: https://mailchi.mp/55885d99562d/dcswellness   

LIVE SEATED CORE WORKOUT 

Ready for an activity break to help you feel energized and motivated? Join us
on Tuesday, August 17 9:30-9:45 a.m. Central/10:30-10:45 a.m. Eastern. 

Workout: Regional Wellness Coordinator Kayla will be leading a seated core workout for ALL fitness levels. 

Attire: Anything you can move in! 

Equipment Needed: Just the chair you’re sitting in!

 ** Please sign this digital waiver prior to the live workout. ** 

Join THIS LINK at the time of the event.   

 

 

Kevin Byard's Gracious Gesture

Kevin Byard's Family Rejuvenates the Davidson Resource Linkage Safe Room

After weeks of renovation the Davidson County Resource Linkage office has officially re-opened. The partnership with the Byard Family Legacy has been and will continue to be a blessing to the region -- and to youth that come into the building. Our goal has been to update and truly create a space that will help to reduce the trauma and ease the stress of awaiting placement. Over the weeks we have been able to truly transform the space to better accommodate the needs of the youth we serve.

-- Shantina Marshall, Davidson County Resource Linkage

Read even more from The Titans

 

 

WALKING THEIR WAY TO WIN!  

We want to give a shout out to the following teams for placing in the DCS Wellness Council's recent “Can YOUR Team Walk Across TN Challenge” throughout July. Everyone rallied together to really step it up and we’re so proud of the effort and energy they all put into moving more this past month!     

1st Place - Walker Knoxville Rangers (from Knox County, led by Team Captain Cody Sheets)

2nd Place - The Shelby Steppers (from Shelby, led by Team Captain Marqueshia Bradford)

3rd Place - Walk This Weigh (from East TN, led by Team Captain Donna Valandingham) 

WHAT MAKES YOU SMILE CHALLENGE  

The 2nd week in August marks “National Smile Week” and the DCS Wellness Council wants you to show off your smile! You can capture a selfie, loved ones or things, pets, and/or activities (like family or sporting events and hobbies) that make YOU smile.  

Please share your smile(s) with us at dcswellness.council@tn.gov by EOD Friday 8/20.  

TOBACCO-FREE LIVING WEBINAR

Join WFHTN's “Tobacco-Free Living” webinar on August 11, 9-10 a.m. or August 19, 1-2 p.m. Central.

This session isn’t just for smokers. We’ll go over how tobacco affects the body. And various ways the people use nicotine – like vaping. We’ll talk about how you can get ready to quit. Or help someone you love to start on the path to tobacco-free living. 

Join one of the two offerings coming up:  

Wednesday, August 11 at 9 – 10 AM Central – Click THIS LINK at the time of the event. 

Thursday, August 19 at 1-2 PM Central – Click THIS LINK at the time of the event.  

BE FINANCIALLY FIT

In honor of National Financial Awareness Day (August 14), learn more about your Here4TN Financial Wellness Benefits (including access to financial calculators, tools, tips and a money coach at no additional cost). 

NATIONAL RELAXATION DAY IS COMING UP!  

Fun and relaxation are good for your health! In honor of National Relaxation Day (Sunday, August 15), share YOUR favorite way (or place!) to relax with us at dcswellness.council@tn.gov. (And don’t forget to make time for relaxation in your schedule this week!) 

LIVE MENTAL HEALTH BREAK

Let’s take a mental break to help lower stress and bring some FUN into your day.

Join a live Mental Health Break with Working for a Healthier Tennessee! This will take place on Thursday, August 12th from 1:00-1:15 PM Central/2:00-2:15 PM Eastern.

What to Expect: Regional Wellness Coordinator Morgan will be leading trivia & the top 3 will be awarded a WFHTN trophy shaped stress reliever! We will be playing trivia using the platform “Kahoot” (www.kahoot.it). In order to enjoy the most out of Kahoot it is ideal to be able to utilize a secondary screen such as a phone that has access to internet or a secondary monitor. This is because you need to be able to see both the WebEx screen (to see the questions/answers) and your personal Kahoot screen (to answer the questions). The game pin will be provided on the day of trivia. Come and play!

** Please click THIS LINK at the time of the event to join.** 

BE THE ONE SUICIDE PREVENTION TRAINING  

Far too many Tennesseans die from the hopelessness that leads to suicide, and sadly, coworkers in workplaces are not exempt. The Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services would like to equip your teams and your departments with training to recognize the signs and prevent suicide in the workforce. 

Who should attend?

This training is intended for any employee interested in the topic, and it is also a great introduction for HR staff who are interested in becoming trainers in their departments. 

What will you learn?

There are three key components of the campaign: Provides suicide awareness and social marketing strategies by providing information regarding suicide and serves as a reminder that suicide can happen at any time to anyone Teaches participants how to recognize when someone may be thinking about suicide, how to ask the question directly and offers tips on how to develop good listening skills, which is a key component of suicide prevention Provides postvention suggestions in the event a suicide occurs to someone in the workforce 

** To register for the training or to get more information about the program, please email betheone.info@tn.gov. This training is being provided virtually over Microsoft Teams. 

MONDAY, AUGUST 16, 2021 AT 2 PM CDT – 4 PM CDT

FRIDAY, AUGUST 20, 2021 AT 2 PM CDT – 4 PM CDT   

Strawberries

NATIONAL FARMERS MARKET WEEK (August 1-7)  

To celebrate National Farmers Market Week, join the DCS Wellness Council in showcasing pictures of YOU at your local Farmers Market, in your own home garden, or cooking a meal with farm fresh produce!  Please submit your photo(s) with permission to dcswellness.council@tn.gov between Sunday, August 1 and EOD Saturday, August 14 for a chance at one of five wellness prizes.    

 

BUILDING HEALTHY ROUTINES

Chaos, clutter and a lack of organization causes the stress that threatens your ability to adapt and grow after stressful events. When you’re organized, you’ll feel more in control when stress hits. Here are five tips to help you build a healthier routine!

Ready for an activity break to help you feel energized and motivated?

Join WFHTN on Wednesday, August 4 from 9:30-9:45a.m. Central/10:30-10:45a.m. Eastern.

Workout: WFHTN Wellness Coordinator Kayla will be leading a resistance band workout for ALL fitness levels.

Attire: Anything you can move in!

Equipment Needed: Resistance bands

Digital Waiver: Please sign this digital waiver prior to the live workout. Click here: https://forms.gle/EnSGxwn2RZwsbhMJ9

How To Join: Download your calendar appointment for this event HERE

 

EVENTS EVERY WEEK

DHS 10-MINUTE FITNESS BREAK

Every Wednesday 11 - 11:15 a.m. Central

JOIN THIS LINK AT THE TIME OF THE EVENT

YOGA FOR ALL

Every Wednesday at 12:30 - 12:45 p.m. Central  

Download your August calendar appointment series HERE.
(Session password: yoga)  

DCS FITNESS BREAKS [UPDATED!]

Take 15-minutes to get fit with your DCS Wellness Council every Thursday!

You can expect a livestream workout handpicked by your Wellness Council members.

Now Every Thursday (vs. Friday) from 11 - 11:15 a.m. Central 

Download your updated calendar appointment series HERE.

 

 

Three Appointments in Child Safety

As a department, we have worked hard over the past 18 months to implement the CPS Redesign, and as of June we are proud of all involved because it has been successfully rolled out in all 12 regions. The redesign is a collaborative child welfare approach between child programs, juvenile justice, and child protection.

To further strengthen the CPS Redesign, Deputy Commissioner Carla Aaron and I are pleased to announce three  appointments in the Office of Child Safety:

Amy Koslick will serve as Executive Director and oversee the regional CPS operations for Northeast, East, Smoky, Knox, Upper Cumberland, Tennessee Valley, South Central and SIU. Ms. Koslick brings 27 years of experience with DCS in numerous capacities from frontline case management to Deputy Regional Administrator, and most recently as the Director of Investigations.  Ms. Koslick has worked closely with Child Protective Investigation Team (CPIT) partners and other key stakeholders, serving on multi-agency several task forces and work groups. She has been instrumental in the expansion of the drug teams and developing strong collaborations with treatment providers and law enforcement.

Deshawn Harris will serve as Executive Director and oversee the Shelby, Southwest, Northwest, Davidson, and Mid-Cumberland Regions. Mr. Harris has over 20 years of experience at DCS as a CPS frontline investigator, team coordinator and most recently as the CPS Director for the Shelby County teams.  Mr. Harris has helped lead the initial CPS Redesign pilot in Shelby County and continued to support the redesign with peer support in other regions. He has excellent relationships with stakeholders and community partners and has developed and implemented other regional and statewide child safety initiatives. Mr. Harris brings to the senior leadership team a unique perspective from a large urban area and successfully creating and maintaining various strategies such as the Shelby County CPS 2nd shift and is an active participant as an actor in the CPS Academy SIM Lab.  

Pierce Beckham will serve as the Director of System Integration and Innovation. In this role, Mr. Beckham will ultimately oversee the ChildStat program and is currently working closely with Debbie Miller to transition responsibilities. In this new role, he will continue to integrate and strengthen the response from all program areas into the process of reducing custodial children and the time to permanency. Mr. Beckham will continue oversee the Safe Measures collaboration for all program areas, support the TFACTS enhancement projects, and will have responsibility for specially assigned regional projects supporting innovation and connectivity between program areas. He will also remain involved in our collaborative efforts with various partners involving human trafficking. Mr. Beckham has over 14 years of experience at DCS, starting his career in the Mid-Cumberland Region in CPS as a case manager and later as a program specialist, Regional Investigations Director and Deputy Director of Investigations.

Please join me in congratulating Amy, Deshawn and Pierce on their new roles as they continue to serve Tennessee’s children and families.

I hope each of you have a peaceful weekend,

Jennifer Nichols

 

ILApplications

Teaming Up to Carry to the Load

As young people from throughout the state continue to apply for federal stimulus funds, many people have been pitching in to help process all the of the digital paperwork. 

"Please know how much we appreciate your willingness to pitch in and assist with the Tennessee Foster Care Alumni Stimulus validation process. Your positive attitudes and sense of humor will bode well in working with this population. Our thanks!"

-- Deputy Commissioner Sandra Wilson

"I add my thanks to Sandra’s. I’m so very appreciative of your willingness to jump in and help with this VERY important and worthwhile project."

-Commissioner Jennifer Nichols

 

June Employee of the Month

Mark Your Calendar for Wellness

Want to relieve your body aches and take a moment to de-stress?

Join us for a LIVE Workout with Working for a Healthier Tennessee (WFHTN)! 

Time: Thursday, Jul 29, 2021 1:00 pm | 15 minutes | (UTC-05:00) Central Time (US & Canada)

Attire: Anything you can move in!

Equipment Needed: None 

**Please sign THIS DIGITAL WAIVER prior to the live workout.

Download a calendar appointment for this event HERE. (Password: stretch) 

EVENTS HAPPENING EACH WEEK

DHS 10-MINUTE FITNESS BREAK

Every Wednesday 11 - 11:15 a.m. Central

JOIN THIS LINK AT THE TIME OF THE EVENT

YOGA FOR ALL

Every Wednesday at 12:30 p.m. Central  

Download your calendar appointment series HERE. (Session password: yoga) 

DCS' FRIDAY FITNESS BREAKS

Every Friday from 11 - 11:15 a.m. Central 

Download your calendar appointment series HERE.

Back to School News

Back to school 2021

 

Please join us as we build a partnership to share effective strategies that support families returning to school this fall.  This series will be offered virtually beginning this August

 

Please click on the title of the session below to register.

 Impact of the Pandemic on Families

08/03/21 | 9: 30AM CST-11:00AM CST

Presenter: Dr. Tim Perry -- This presentation will focus on the traumatic emotional and behavioral health impact of this global pandemic on the family, and what we may expect to see in the months and years that follow this event.

Intersections of Mental Health and Suicide

08/10/21 9:30AM-11:00AM CST

Presenter: Caitlin Ensley, MSSW -- This presentation will prepare parents, caregivers, community members, and professionals to understand and address these mental health needs, encouraging resilience in the young people in their lives, while also supporting the mental health of the entire family unit now that the United States is moving into the post-pandemic world.

 

Building Resiliency through Brain Health

08/17/21| 9:30AM-11:00AM CST

PRESENTER: Wendy Ellmo, M.S., CCC-SLP, BCNCDS -- This presentation will show that resilience and a healthy brain are connected and how both are related to mental health, physical health, and possibly even longevity. You will leave with tools and tips for thriving through your next adversity, or at the least, learn how to bounce back faster.

 

Putting the Pieces Together: Panel and Q&A

08/24/21 | 9:30AM-11:00AM CST

Presenters: Dr. Tim Perry, Caitlyn Ensley, Wendy Ellmo, Brittany Willis, Amy Kinsman,
Michelle Hopton and Amanda Johnson --
This presentation will provide a culmination of learning and an enhanced understanding of the topics presented in the series. Panelists will provide a brief overview of the previous training material presented, highlight their agency’s mission, work and resources and answer questions from the attendees. 

 

Educators, professionals, parents and caregivers are encouraged to attend. There is 1.5 hour training credit per session, total of 6 hours of training credit if you attend all sessions. NASW CEU credit is available and must be requested during registration.

Contact Anna Richmond for assistance with registration.

 

Blueberries

It’s National Blueberry Month!

 Blueberries are bursting with benefits. One cup of blueberries is 80 calories and filled with essential nutrients. These nutrients help with heart health, the immune system, energy, regularity and more.  

 Want ideas for ways to enjoy blueberries? Check out the healthy recipe section on the WFHTN website, which includes recipes like Healthier Blueberry Muffins and a Red, White and Blue Parfait

 And learn more about where you can find fresh Tennessee produce and fun on local farms near you HERE.

 

SEATED CORE WORKOUT

Join this upcoming LIVE Workout with WFHTN on Tuesday, July 20 9:30-9:45a.m. Central / 10:30-10:45a.m. Eastern.

Workout: WFHTN
Regional Wellness Coordinator Kayla will be leading a seated core workout for ALL fitness levels.

Attire: Anything you can move in

Equipment Needed: Just the chair you’re sitting in!

 ** Please sign this digital waiver prior to the live workout.  

Download your calendar appointment for the workout HERE. 

 

 

The Here4TN Hunt is Here!

Do you know all that Here4TN has to offer you as a State employee?

Life’s full of challenges and Here4TN can make them easier.

Take the virtual Here4TN Scavenger Hunt to find out all the ways Here4TN can help YOU!  

Link to access the July Here4TN Scavenger Hunt:
https://mailchi.mp/53dbe36c1445/here4tnscavengerhunt

 (Submission Tip: Be sure to hit the green ‘Submit’ button after each question.)  


**The Here4TN Scavenger Hunt is open July 12-23.** 

P.S. A random 50 employees who complete the July Here4TN Scavenger Hunt will score a Here4TN phone wallet!  

HOW TO SIMPLIFY YOUR LIFE (WEBINAR)

Wednesday July 14 from 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Central/12:30-1:30 p.m. Eastern

With this program, participants will learn to identify personal barriers to living life simply through examining their inner beliefs. Program highlights also include examinations of inner pressures and how excuse-making helps people avoid c hange.

Participants will:

• Define values and beliefs

• Identify methods for decluttering

• Explore streamlining chores and commitments

• Discuss the importance of supportive relationships

• Write a personal action plan for how to simplify life** PLEASE REGISTER HERE **

MINDFULNESS BREAK

Let’s take a mental break to help lower stress and bring some calm into your day. Join us for a live Mindfulness Break with Working for a Healthier Tennessee!

This will take place on Thursday, July 15 from 1:00-1:15 PM Central/2:00-2:15 PM Eastern.

What to Expect: Regional Wellness Coordinator Morgan will be leading mindfulness practices that you can take with you throughout your day and life. This will be a chance to relax and learn techniques for becoming more mindful. No equipment needed!** JOIN THIS LINK AT THE TIME OF THE BREAK. **

LOOP RESISTANCE BAND WORKOUT

Ready for an activity break to help you feel energized and motivated?

It’s time for our next Live Workout with Working for a Healthier Tennessee! Join us on Thursday, July 8
9:30-9:45a.m. Central/10:30-10:45a.m. Eastern.

Workout: Regional Wellness Coordinator Kayla will be leading a loop resistance band workout for ALL fitness
levels. Attire: Anything you can move in!

Equipment Needed: Loop resistance band. 

Please sign this digital waiver prior to the live
workout: Click here: https://forms.gle/EnSGxwn2RZwsbhMJ9

** JOIN THIS LINK AT THE TIME OF THE WORKOUT. **

 JOIN THE DCS FRIDAY FITNESS BREAKS IN JULY!

Get fit with the DCS Wellness Council on Fridays! You can expect a livestream
workout handpicked by your Wellness Council members. 

Every Friday from 11 - 11:15 a.m. Central CLICK HERE TO JOIN THE TEAMS MEETING

Staff Shoutout

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DCS is working on producing a version of the Full Disclosure Video for our Spanish-speaking customers.  A special thanks to our own DCS staff members Bonnie Ortiz, Mary Platillero-Howard, and Chris Ramos for volunteering their time and expertise to this project.  We are very excited to offer an additional resource to families who are Spanish-speaking and to our staff who serve those families.

New Pandemic Aid for Former Tennessee Foster Youth

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Some former foster youth are now eligible for federal stimulus funds! We need your help to let them know so they can get their money. Please share the information on this page with any young adults who were in foster care at age 14 or older and are currently 18-26. 

Congratulations 2020 DCS Employees of the Year!

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GOT YOUR DREAM TEAM TOGETHER!? The DCS Wellness Council is excited to be hosting the "Can Your Team Walk Across TN Challenge"! This is a team-based walking challenge where the goal is simple - to walk as far as you can as a team over a four-week period. Recruit your Team, come up with a fun Team name, and let us know you're in it to win it by Wednesday, June 30 and register your Team HERE(Learn more details about this challenge HERE.) 

LET'S GET ACTIVE OUTDOORS

 

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July is Park and Recreation Month! Parks are at the center of so many experiences and memories. Our local parks are often our first experiences in nature, our introduction to a favorite hobby or physical activity. They are places to gather with friends and family, spaces to celebrate life’s special moments, spots of respite and healing, sites that connect us with essential community services, and so much more. This July, let's get active outdoors by visiting Tennessee Greenways, Trails or State Parks in recognition of Park and Recreation Month!

STAY COOL THIS SUMMER

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Hot weather provides opportunities for us to enjoy the outdoors. Take steps to keep yourself safe and healthy, both indoors and outdoors!

SUSTAINABILITY IN THE OFFICE - TIP #4! Rachel Jones (Administrative Services Assistant II with DCS Human Resources) is sharing more of her World Environment Day tips as we get back into the office environment. Here's tip #4: 

  • Coffee Coalition: "What better transition to talk about coffee than having your own mug? By forming a “Coffee Coalition” you can save your office from producing food waste and keep the caffeine flowing. Try learning who around you drinks coffee and then purchasing your coffee, creamers, sweeteners and supplies in bulk. If you buy one large creamer at the start of the month and offer to share with the group, you reduce the need for 10 different creamers all being labeled in the fridge and going bad before they can be used up. Concerned about the cost? Try starting a jar where people can contribute change and as needed, one person can pick up the coffee supplies." 

LIVESTREAM STRETCH (THURSDAY, JULY 1)

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Want to relieve your body aches and take a moment to de-stress? Join us for a LIVEstream Workout with Working for a Healthier Tennessee (WFHTN)! 

** Please sign this digital waiver prior to the live workout. Click here: https://forms.gle/EnSGxwn2RZwsbhMJ9 **

DCS' FRIDAY FITNESS BREAKS (JULY 2021)

Get fit with the DCS Wellness Council on Fridays! You can expect a live stream workout handpicked by our own DCS Wellness Council members. 

** HOW-TO JOIN: Join the TEAMS link at 11 a.m. Central HERE. **

Follow DCS on Social Media

Follow the DCS Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn pages to stay connected!

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LET'S MAKE A PLAYLIST! Music has a powerful effect on our brains! In fact, brain images show that music can trigger feel-good hormones. Help us create a DCS “Work Playlist” in honor of World Music Day this Monday, June 21st!  

  • Please submit YOUR favorite workday song(s) to dcswellness.council@tn.gov. Be sure to include:  
    • The Title of the Song(s) for our "DCS Work Playlist" 
    • The Song(s) Artist (if available) 
    • [OPTIONAL] Whether or not we have permission to include your Name and Song submission(s) with others when we share our final “DCS Work Playlist.” 
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WORLD ENVIRONMENT DAY TIP #3! Rachel Jones (Administrative Services Assistant II with DCS Human Resources) is sharing more of her personal sustainability tips as we start to go back into the office. Check out her Tip #3: 

  • TIP #3: B.Y.O…
  • “Bring your own…” is not just a way for cheap college students to get out of providing cups for their friends, it can be a lifestyle and motto for those passionate about reducing waste. I recommend that everyone who eats at least one meal while at work keep the following items in their desk or bring them into the office each day: cutlery, cup, plate/ bowl, hand towel. I say that because you’re bound to drink something like water or coffee throughout the day and contrary to the song, Red Solo Cups do not actually decompose.
  • You should also bring your own set of cutlery, or keep a communal set in your break room, because every piece of plastic ever made still exists on this planet. So each time you accept a take-away fork or you bring your container of plastic forks to work, you’re adding to the proverbial “island” of trash in our oceans.
  • I recommend keeping a bowl or plate at the office because you never know when someone may bring in a cake for the group or you’ll suddenly want to heat up that item you brought that you thought you’d eat cold. Heating up paper products may sound okay in your book if they’re not plastic-coated but remember that your paper product had to be bleached to become that white color, and those toxins are ever-present when we heat our foods. I keep a microwave-safe bowl in my space and use it for all my plate and bowl needs.
  • *Bonus tip- I also keep one empty takeaway container at my desk for when I choose to buy lunch out. Not every restaurant will accommodate but I have learned that many restaurants will put my lunch straight into my reusable container and save me the waste of a Styrofoam box!
  • The last item sounds a little odd, and it’s definitely more work than the others, but I also recommend at least one hand towel lives at every office. When you’ve got your whole office using reusable and washable dishes, you’re inevitably going to have dishes that need to dry. If you forget your hand towel at home that day, you’ll be stuck going through layers and layers of paper towels trying to dry off your dishes. I personally bring in a dish towel once a week for our whole office to use as needed, and each Friday I take it home to clean it and bring it back on Monday morning.
  • These few bring-your-own swaps can not only help your office’s break room feel more like a kitchen at home, but they’re saving waste and creating community amongst peers. Aren’t you wondering who has that cute coffee cup in the cabinet? Maybe you’ll run into them on your next break!

Wanna reduce those aches & pains from your workday? In honor of “National Work from Home Day” (Thursday, June 24), take a moment to make sure your workspace (at home or at the office) is ergonomically fit for YOU.  Here are some helpful handouts from Working for a Healthier TN to help you make the right adjustments: 

WFH

EARN CASH INCENTIVES THIS SUMMER Summer is here! It’s a great time to focus on your health and well-being – while earning cash incentives along the way. State health plan members can get started at: MyActiveHealth.com/WellnessTN.

  • NOTE: If you are a state employee, but not enrolled in the health plan - you still have access to ActiveHealth’s web portal and mobile app!

THIS WEEK'S EVENTS

  • LIVE WORKOUT: CORE (STANDING). Ready for an activity break to help you feel energized and motivated? Join us on Tuesday, June 22, 9:30-9:45 a.m. Central/10:30-10:45a.m. Eastern. Workout: Kayla will be leading a standing core workout.
  • JOIN 'YOGA FOR ALL' IN JUNE! Join fellow state employees for a 15-minute live virtual seated yoga class each Wednesday at 12:30-12:45 Central (1:30-1:45 Eastern) that is suitable for beginners & relaxing for all fitness levels. No special equipment or attire is needed - just a chair! **Download your calendar appointment for every Wednesday in June HERE.**
  • "MENTAL HEALTH MATTERS" IS BACK! Due to several requests, the #4Mind4Body Mental Health Matters webinar (from Here4TN) will be available again for state employees on Thursday, June 24 from 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Central. 
    • This one-hour presentation focuses on the impact of COVID-19 and social unrest.
    • Click THIS LINK to register.
    • NOTE: Registration is required. This session will not be recorded. (If employees are not able to attend the webinar, a copy of the slides can be shared after June 24.) If Internet Explorer doesn’t work to register, you may need to try a different browser.
  • DON'T FORGET ABOUT DCS' FRIDAY FITNESS BREAKS! Join your colleagues every Friday in June from 11-11:15 AM Central for a chance to get fit. (Click THIS LINK to join.) 

READY TO STEP IT UP!? The DCS Wellness Council is excited to be hosting the "Can Your Team Walk Across TN Challenge"! This is a team-based walking challenge where the goal is simple - to walk as far as you can as a team over a four-week period. Start recruiting your team, come up with a fun Team name, and get ready to join us starting July 4! (Learn more about this upcoming challenge HERE.) 

Steps Challenge
May_Winners
Walk_Me_Home

The 14th Annual Walk Me Home Family Fun Run/Walk for Foster Care is Saturday, June 12! It's not too late to create or join a team. You can register HERE.

The Walk Me Home Enrichment Fund provides children and teens in foster care in Tennessee the opportunity to receive financial assistance for a variety of special needs and activities, such as camps, musical instruments/lessons, school/church trips, and sports participation.

Weekly_Wellness

WORLD ENVIRONMENT DAY TIP #2! Last week, Rachel Jones (Administrative Services Assistant II with DCS Human Resources) started sharing some of her personal sustainability tips as we start to go back into the office. Check out her Tip #2: 

  1. TIP #2: Send inner-office mail. This is one of my favorite things to do as an alternate to waste. I always double check where a person sits and works before I try to send them something. If I do have to send them something as a physical file, I pull out a messenger envelope, address is appropriately and move it through the right systems. This saves us money on postage, moves rapidly through the system, and the bonus of reusing messenger envelopes until all lines are full keeps us from producing more adhesives, paper, and metal clasps from traditional mailing supplies.

DO YOU KNOW YOUR TN STATE PARKS!? Test your TN State Park knowledge and take a little brain break with this word scramble created by your DCS Wellness Council. Submit your answers to dcswellness.council@tn.gov.

TRY THIS ONE THING TO TAKE CHARGE OF YOUR HEALTH! There are several things you can do to take care of your own health, including getting to know your family’s health history. Doing this helps uncover all the traits your family members share – including those that you can’t see, like diabetes or cancer. Please join the DCS Wellness Council this National Men's Health Week (June 14-20) and National Men's Health Month (June) as we aim to help the males and loved ones in our lives lead longer, healthier lives by learning about our own family health histories

MORE FOR MEN'S HEALTH MONTH & WEEK. You can also check out WFHTN's Men's Health Month handout/infographic. And/or join the DCS Wellness Council in wearing BLUE this Friday, June 18! Submit your photos/selfies to dcswellness.council@tn.gov.

Wear BLUE_Men's Health Month

THIS WEEK'S WELLNESS BREAKS:

  • JOIN 'YOGA FOR ALL' IN JUNE! Join fellow state employees for a 15-minute live virtual seated yoga class each Wednesday at 12:30-12:45 Central (1:30-1:45 Eastern) that is suitable for beginners & relaxing for all fitness levels. No special equipment or attire is needed - just a chair! **Download your calendar appointment for every Wednesday in June HERE.**
  • MINDFULNESS BREAK WITH WFHTN. Let’s take a mental break to help lower stress and bring some calm into your day. Join us for a live Mindfulness Break with Working for a Healthier Tennessee! What to Expect: WFHTN will be leading mindfulness practices that you can take with you throughout your day and life. This will be a chance to relax and learn techniques for becoming more mindful. No equipment needed! ** Download your calendar appointment for Thursday, June 17 at 1-1:15 PM Central HERE. **
  • DON'T FORGET ABOUT DCS' FRIDAY FITNESS BREAKS! Join your colleagues every Friday in June from 11-11:15 AM Central for chance to get fit. (Click THIS LINK to join.) 

THE TRICKY THING ABOUT EMOTIONAL TRAUMA [from the ParTNers Health & Wellness Center] When you fall and scrape your knee, there's visual evidence of the trauma. It’s easy to know what to do to treat it. You can see your wound healing, and you know when it’s safe to return to normal activities. Unfortunately, emotional trauma does not follow such a predictable process. COVID-19 has left many of us reeling, with conflicting emotions. This can be described as emotional trauma. As the world begins to open and life returns to “normal,” you may feel burned out, tired, confused or unsure how to live life. Unlike a scrape on the knee, there is no tried-and-true course of healing from an unexpected event like a pandemic. June is Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Awareness Month. This observance is timely given the challenges of the past year. Can you relate to some of the common effects of PTSD? READ MORE FROM AMY HERE

THE FIRST STEP TO GOOD HEALTH: KNOW YOUR NUMBERS [from ParTNers for Health] 

  • Your biometric numbers refer to your body mass index (BMI), blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol. It’s important to know your numbers to help you manage your overall health. 
  • Your annual physical typically includes blood work as well. By reviewing your results each year, you can more easily avoid potential health conditions such as: Diabetes, High blood pressure, Heart disease. 
  • Tests and screenings that take place during your annual check-up are a valuable tool to take control of your health.
  • For State employees: Earn an incentive when you complete your biometric screening. Get the biometric form and bring it to your doctor on your next visit HERE.
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