ICAA and NuStep announce Beacon Award for ‘best in wellness’ senior living communities, invite applications
VANCOUVER, BC–As separate entities, the International Council on Active Aging® (ICAA) and NuStep, LLC have long championed active aging and wellness. Now, the two organizations have teamed up to recognize and honor senior living communities that have excelled at adopting wellness-based lifestyles.
ICAA, an association that leads, connects and defines the active-aging industry, supports organizations and professionals that develop wellness environments and services for adults over 50. NuStep is a leading manufacturer of recumbent cross trainers used in healthcare, senior living and fitness settings worldwide. Together, they proudly introduce the ICAA NuStep Beacon Award.
“The first award to recognize ‘best in wellness’ communities, a Beacon Award will instantly distinguish a senior living community as one of the most desirable places to live,” said ICAA’s CEO and Founder Colin Milner.
By identifying recipients as a leader in creating cultures of wellness, the Beacon Award will give winners a powerful new tool for recruiting staff, attracting new investors or adding extra prestige to marketing materials. Recipients will each receive a crystal award trophy to display in their communities—a symbol of excellence to inspire residents and staff daily.
The Beacon Award comes at a crucial time in the older-adult wellness movement. In a recent ICAA survey, 59% of senior living communities forecast that by 2023, rather than adhering to the traditional care-based model with options for wellness, they will become wellness-based communities with options for care.
The tipping point is attributable to many factors, including recent scientific discoveries related to health and aging and a greater acceptance of individual responsibility for one’s health. The result is a groundswell of effort directed at reimagining the way senior living communities are being designed, built, managed and staffed.
“Wellness is no longer a movement or a trend,” said Milner. “It has become a way of life. When we started 18 years ago, a wellness strategy might have meant putting a few pieces of exercise equipment in a spare room. But over the last few years, we’ve been seeing constant increases in programs, investments in staff and large standalone environments built just for wellness, with results backed by extensive research studies.”
Jane Benskey, Communications Specialist and long-time judge for the NuStep Pinnacle Award, added, “The momentum toward wellness was influenced by innovative leaders, thinkers and doers. The Beacon Award will recognize those who continue to lead the way.”
To help other organizations learn from Beacon winners and improve their own operations, ICAA and NuStep will catalogue and publicize the best practices of Beacon Award winners on a new Beacon Award website, Milner says.
In its first year, Beacon Awards will be presented to the 25 most deserving applicants. The top five of those will receive an additional ICAA NuStep Pinnacle Award for their particularly exceptional contributions, carrying on NuStep’s vision in a newly reenvisioned joint program.
All senior living communities are invited to visit the new Beacon Best in Wellness Award website to determine if they qualify and to apply.
The first annual Beacon Awards will be announced on August 6, 2019.
NuStep, LLC designs, manufactures and distributes recumbent cross trainer exercise equipment. NuStep products, accessories and adaptive equipment empower users of virtually all functional abilities and fitness levels to engage in exercise that helps build strength, enhance independence and improve health outcomes. NuStep established the Pinnacle Award in 1998 to recognize senior communities and senior centers transforming lives through whole-person wellness programming. The award also served as a vehicle to educate and encourage senior organizations to integrate whole-person wellness into their programming.
ICAA, a professional association that leads, connects and defines the active-aging industry, supports professionals who aspire to develop wellness cultures for adults over 50. This includes creating wellness environments, programs and services. The association is focused on active aging—an approach to aging that helps older adults live life as fully as possible within all dimensions of wellness -and provides its members with education, information, resources and tools.
As an active-aging educator and advocate, ICAA has advised numerous organizations and governmental bodies, including the US Administration on Aging, the National Institute on Aging (one of the US National Institutes of Health), the US Department of Health and Human Services, Canada’s Special Senate Committee on Aging, and the British Columbia (Canada) Ministries of Health and Healthy Living and Sport.