Redwood Empire Schools Insurance Group wins Healthiest Companies Award

Redwood Empire Schools' Insurance Group employees tend raised garden beds at the Windsor office on Aug. 23, 2017. (RESIG)


Since RESIG’s wellness program was established, this school insurance group has continued to improve its robust program each year. Company officials say RESIG’s overall goal is to serve as a role model to its member school districts as it supports their efforts to educate children in the community while encouraging employees to raise the bar on their approach to attaining a healthy lifestyle.

“Our long-term wellness program has become part of our culture and helps our employees feel valued and look forward to coming to work,” said RESIG’s Gretchen Schmidt. “We believe that it builds camaraderie and creates a friendly, yet productive environment.” In 2017, RESIG has added several new program additions based on feedback from its annual surveys that have helped the organization give employees more of what they want.

In 2017, five new additions were made to enhance this program including its new Wellness Garden for growing organic vegetables, the option of having sit/stand workstations for every member of the staff, employee assistance programs and virtual yoga and stretch breaks.

Employees are encouraged to support Breast Cancer Awareness month, Live Healthy Sonoma County activities and similar community support initiatives.

When it comes to encouraging healthy eating habits, quarterly Lunch n’ Learns are scheduled featuring a variety of timely topics. There is an annual Healthy Chef Contest and healthy snacks and recipes are available on a weekly basis.

Contests encourage physical activities such as daily walk breaks, in-place exercise and Wii Fit participation. This year, RESIG added a daily Challenge Board that will keep track of points accumulated toward achieving incentives each quarter.

The organization hosts an Annual Employee Appreciation Day, Wellness Picnics and provides healthy lunches along with group wellness activities. Monthly health messages are shared among all staff members during breaks and at lunchtime.

The RESIG wellness program continues to provide various stress relief options through games and activities provided for employee use in the break room.

In addition, local community wellness fairs, races and volunteers are promoted within the organization to help employees improve their health while giving back by working with various charitable groups.

RESIG completed a Wellness Room this year that has been enhanced with many features enabling employees to relax in a quiet, peaceful environment. The room is available for all staff and has accommodations for nursing mothers and is equipped with a bed, couch, wellness books, Salt-lamp for tranquil lighting, floor mats for stretching, a pressure cuff and a weight scale.

RESIG has created an Ergonomic Program for employees to help them improve their working environment, and bicycle racks are offered to encourage cycling to work.

All of these activities are conducted within a budget of $1,750 per year and a small, but very dynamic employee wellness committee volunteer group, company officials say.