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Winter health & wellness strategies

Hazelview Properties arms tenants with tools to beat the blues

Monday, January 16, 2023

With winter comes darker days, colder temperatures, and for many Canadians, the winter blues. Prioritizing health and wellness can be challenging at the best of times—especially for those living in high-density buildings. To arm its residents against the known consequences of prolonged isolation and indoor hibernation, Hazelview Properties, in partnership with holistic wellness and life coach Amy Ballantyne, hosted a free webinar entitled, “Optimizing Apartment Living: Wellness Strategies for Wintertime” in late 2022.

“Hazelview’s sustainability vision is to foster happy, healthy, thriving communities where we operate,” said Jasmin Pirani, Director, Marketing & Corporate Social Responsibility. “We believe that resident health and wellbeing is an implicit component of our overall ESG/Sustainability commitments.”

Prior to launching the event, the company surveyed its residents about which socio-economic issues were most important to them, to which ‘health and wellness support’ emerged as a top issue. Based on this feedback, Hazelview worked closely with its residents and team members to understand how they could bring lasting health and wellness tools to the many communities in which it operates.

The outcome was the “Wellness Strategies for Wintertime” webinar, a free portfolio-wide event featuring tips, resources and services intended to help Hazelview apartment residents better face the darkest days of winter. According to Pirani, the webinar was well-attended, and the benefits of providing these types of resident supports can’t be underscored enough.

“Year over year we are seeing an increase in number of residents participating in our programming and services,” she said. “There is a growing appetite from residents for more events and programs like the one we just offered. 94 per cent of those surveyed told us they are ‘likely or very likely’ to attend a program like this again.  We are confident that the resources and support offered in our programs are valuable for residents, with 85 per cent of attendees saying they are ‘likely or very likely’ to incorporate new wellness tools and strategies into their life after having attended the event.”

Partnering with Maple

Recognizing that the Canadian healthcare system is under unprecedented stress, Hazelview partnered with leading virtual healthcare platform, Maple, to bring innovative healthcare benefits for residents across various properties.

As Pirani summed it up: “This partnership demonstrates how two leading organizations can come together to address access to healthcare at a time when health and wellness is at the forefront of the minds of Canadians.”

Here are some of the program’s suggested wellness strategies for beating the winter blues:

  • Create a living environment that is conducive to positive mental wellbeing by clearing clutter, adding plants, and adding light to living spaces.
  • Incorporate strategies that are “present-moment” focused and known to reduce stress. This includes breathing exercises, journaling, connecting with loved ones, and periodically turning off the news, social media, and other distractions.
  • Prioritize sleep.
  • Get regular exercise, whether it’s by choosing to take the stairs instead of the elevator or going for a walk outdoors. For those more intent on staying home, simple daily exercises like planks, push-ups, stretching, and yoga are recommended ways to boost dopamine and beat the winter blues.

In terms of future programming targeting high-density housing residents, Pirani said Hazelview’s search for meaningful supports is underway: “We are committed to bringing more programs like this one to residents. We will be evaluating what issues and topics are most important, and curating programming and events based on those inputs.”

For more information on Hazelview Properties, visit: www.hazelviewproperties.com

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