For me, The Fountain House Wellness Program is more than a cause- it is what I live and breathe everyday. It is what I have chosen to dedicate my time, energy, and career towards: enhancing the quality of life for adults living with serious mental illness by helping them make decisions and incremental changes to improve their physical health and increase their life expectancy; Living longer and living better.
In 2006, it was reported that adults living with serious mental illness die 25 years earlier than the general population due to preventable and treatable health conditions linked to smoking, obesity, substance abuse, and/or difficulty accessing medical care.
At Fountain House our Wellness Program tackles these issues head on by developing and implementing programming in three overlapping areas: Nutrition, Fitness, and Health Programming. We offer numerous opportunities to help our members (approximately 1,000 active members each year) get moving in the right direction: fun competitions to encourage use of our gym; fitness classes taught by guest instructors; organized rock climbing trips, bike riding groups along the Hudson River; informative health workshops and screenings by community partners; support groups for weight loss, smoking cessation, substance abuse; a teaching kitchen to prepare healthy and nutritious snacks and hold interactive cooking classes; a produce market providing access to locally grown produce at an affordable price; an annual 5K run/walk to increase community awareness and decrease stigma, and much more!