Alberta Blue Cross® is looking to recognize Albertans who are champions for wellness in their communities through its annual Faces of Wellness program. Each year, the program recognizes those making positive lifestyle changes toward becoming healthier, promoting a health-related cause, making the most of life while living with a chronic condition, advocating for wellness in their workplace, standing up for mental health or acting as a role model for others. There are less than 2 weeks left to apply for the 2023 Alberta Blue Cross® Faces of Wellness program, so Albertans are encouraged to submit applications now.
In 2022, the Faces of Wellness campaign received more than 350 applications and nominations from Albertans across the province. These applications included a recreational therapist who teaches Indigenous-informed yoga and an ovarian cancer survivour who uses training and community groups to stay well and raised money for the Ovarian Cancer Canada Walk of Hope. Alberta Blue Cross® recognized 1 grand prize recipient and 9 finalists.
The grand prize recipient of the 2022 Faces of Wellness program was Lauren Kennedy West. Lauren embodies living well with schizophrenia not only through her personal wellness but also by sharing her experiences with the world. Through her YouTube channel, “Living Well with Schizophrenia,” Lauren provides a safe space for people who would have otherwise felt alone in their experiences with schizophrenia. As a mental health advocate and a pillar of support in the community, Lauren is a face of wellness.
There are many inspiring honourees of the 2022 Faces of Wellness program, including Earl Thiessen, a Calgary local who faced trauma, homelessness, addiction and the murder of his partner. After being arrested with 11 warrants, he told the Justice of the Peace that he wanted and needed help. Earl reconnected with his Indigenous culture which helped with healing and moved into an Oxford home that provided support for people recovering from addictions. Over 10 years later, Earl is now an executive director and one of the biggest advocates for mental health, addiction, homelessness and Indigenous healing in Alberta.
“What I do for a living is not work, it’s a gift and I love and appreciate all of those struggling and all of those working to make other peoples’ lives better,” says Earl.
This is the last opportunity for Albertans to apply or nominate someone they know to be recognized as a face of wellness for a chance to win amazing wellness-themed prizes, including the grand prize of a weekend away in the Alberta Rockies. The deadline to apply for Faces of Wellness is October 1, 2023, and award recipients will be announced in December. To enter and learn more, visit facesofwellness.ca.
This media release was shared as a news story on:
- The Peace Country Sun on Blue Cross® wellness program accepting applications throughout September.