Launched in October, Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long’s new initiative is aimed at cultivating a more active, well-balanced state.
On Oct. 25 at DE TURF in Frederica, Delaware Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long’s office launched the Lt. Governor’s Challenge, encouraging organizations and communities to work toward a healthier Delaware.
Through the challenge, organizations with wellness-promoting programs can compete for Wellness Leadership Awards and recognition by the state. Programs won’t need to address every priority area, but more-comprehensive programs will be at an advantage. These submissions will be reviewed by a diverse committee of judges, many of whom helped design the program.
The challenge is based on a previous program of the same name, created by now-Gov. John Carney. Carney’s program ran from 2001 to 2009 and focused on individual recognition and physical health. Contestants were judged by their participation in a list of daily activities, which were each assigned a point value. At the end of the challenge, contestants were awarded gold, silver and bronze medals based on self-reported point totals over a three-month period.
“We know that change is more likely to occur when it’s not done alone, so that’s why we’re taking a different approach to this,” says Keith Warren, chief of staff for the lieutenant governor. “This is going to be more based on recognizing the nominations of businesses, workplaces, schools and communities.”
The challenge is a part of Hall-Long’s continued efforts to promote behavioral health in Delaware, alongside her Behavioral Health Consortium. The consortium, a far-reaching and comprehensive health initiative, aims to fight problems like opioid addiction and higher crime rates through additional behavioral support and resources.
“Creating an overall healthier population in Delaware is one of the reasons she ran for statewide office,” says Warren “so it was kind of a natural fit for her.”
Organizations and companies can nominate themselves or others for the Lt. Governor’s Challenge. Visit ltgov.delaware.gov for more information and the official criteria for competition.