If you have been meaning to get healthier, you have an advocate on campus. In fact, you have several dozen advocates on campus.

Wellness ambassadors promote health and wellness among UCR faculty and staff. They serve as UCR’s key communicators and help direct employees to wellness programs, activities and resources.

“We are looking for ways to create a healthier campus culture,” said Wellness Program Coordinator Julie Chobdee. “We want our UCR faculty and staff to be healthy, productive, better able to balance work/life and take advantage of all the resources we have to offer.”

Chobdee, who works in Human Resources, has 60 people from all walks of the campus signed up to be Wellness Ambassadors to employees around them.
They may be the ones organizing a fitness class at the noon hour, or walking meetings, or other ideas to create a healthier work environment. They could be suggesting healthier choices for office parties (fruit or mini bagels instead of cupcakes or cake). They might be the people walking to work, or taking the bus or riding a bike. (UCR staff, faculty and students can take the bus for free in Riverside.)

Two fresh opportunities are coming up, both in HUB 269.

At noon on Thursday, Oct. 18, Professor Ameae Walker will present “New Therapeutic Approaches for the Prevention and Treatment of Breast Cancer.”

At noon on Wednesday, Oct. 24, UCR will celebrate Food Day 2012 with the “My Sustainable Plate” theme. Food Day is a nationwide campaign for healthy, delicious and affordable food prepared in a sustainable and humane way. Campus activities are planned by the Wellness Program for Faculty and Staff, Office of Sustainability, The Well, and Dining Services.

On the Wellness Program website, Chobdee has collected healthy recipes, resources for weight loss and personal training, as well as a page for people’s success stories.

Here are a few tips on making your work life healthier:
    • Take the stairs
    • Walk to meetings
    • Get up and stretch
    • Bring a healthy lunch
    • Organize an officewide health potluck
    • Include wellness options in new employee orientations
    • Quit smoking (a policy banning tobacco on campus will take effect in 2014).

Find out who your Wellness Ambassadors are at: wellness.ucr.edu/wellness_ambassador_program.html. For more information, go to wellness.ucr.edu.