Adult Education a Growing Focus at PWC

PWC classesFor peers attending Perry Wellness Center, education is a critical part of the recovery process. Not only do peers learn life skills and better management of their behavioral health problems; they also have more traditional education classes.

Coping with mental health and/or substance abuse problems created disruptions in the formal education of many who now attend Perry Wellness Center. Skill and knowledge gaps may make it more difficult for individuals to find employment or live productively.

Because of this problem, Perry Wellness Center has devoted a great deal of attention to peer education in areas such as reading and math improvement. Several new classes have been organized on campus in order to assist peers in these areas.

“We have different levels of individual needs in our center,” notes Elizabeth Moss, staff counselor. “Before we began the smaller classes, many of our peers were seeking passage of the GED. We hope our smaller classes will better prepare those who want to pursue better things in their lives.”

To assist in the learning process, staff made contact with several local schools to see if used workbooks might be available to use in classes. Sharon Marcus, Staley Middle School principal, and Chad Chaflin, assistant principal, immediately offered to search for workbooks in age-appropriate levels. Recently, PWC staff member Mulkey McMichael and peers Malcolm Johnson and Tommy Greene were invited to the school to pick up a selection of workbooks.

In the photo above, from left, Malcolm Johnson, Principal Marcus, Tommy Greene, Assistant Principal Chaflin, and students Christian Green, Cedric Clark, and Jaren Foster ready workbooks for delivery to Perry Wellness Center.

A huge thanks to the administration of Staley Middle School for their commitment to community education!

Meeting the Cafeteria Challenge

Annie Ruth ThomasOn a daily basis, the Perry Wellness Center cafeteria is a major activity hub. Each morning and midday, up to 77 hungry peers walk through its doors, looking for a tasty meal. The challenge for PWC’s culinary staff is to provide food that is both delicious and nutritious. Most peers’ wellness plans call for healthier eating, so consideration must be given to everything from calorie counts to sodium levels when planning menus.

The mealtime challenge is increased during winter months, and particularly with the recent drastic dip in temperatures. While it might be tempting for kitchen staff to provide the most quickly prepared menu, cafeteria selections include hot food on a daily basis.

The challenge:

    1. Tasty meals that people look forward to eating.
    2. Nutritious meals that promote healthy eating.
    3. Meals that provide warmth and energy.

Observation and peer feedback tell us that the challenge is being met, thanks to our large, state-of-the-art kitchen and professionally trained culinary staff. Our large inventory of frozen produce from Rudy’s Happy Patch Market, along with winter vegetables grown on the premises, doesn’t hurt!

These days, a favorite lunch item is a piping hot stir-fry. Even its preparation promotes teamwork, and a changing array of locally grown vegetables makes for a versatile, delicious, and economical dish.

Ms. Annie Ruth Thomas is one of the proud cafeteria workers at Perry Wellness Center. She has attended the program for ten years and served on the culinary staff for four. In the above photo, she prepares a pan of stir-fry vegetables for lunch in the cafeteria. Bon appétit!

Valentines Holiday Brings Week of Celebration

Valentine WeekBy now you know that we like to stretch out our celebration of holidays at Perry Wellness Center, and Valentines Day is no exception. It might as well be Valentines WEEK on our campus. Holidays are a time to celebrate recovery, socialize with others, and express creativity. Last week we went all out at the center, Monday through Friday.

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PWC Valentine Celebration a Time for Creativity

Valentine decorationsWe hope everyone had a great Valentines Day weekend. At Perry Wellness Center, our planning began weeks in advance, as we planned out our big celebration in the cafeteria. Tables were adorned with decorations created by peers and staff. In the words of Stuart Perry, having peers create such things as centerpieces allows them to be “a bit more expressive and selective.”

“We try and celebrate every fun event at Perry Wellness Center,” Stuart explained. “It gives our peer population a time to use their hands and minds to create new and different decorations. We enjoy peer table discussion as they work to complete the project."

This year’s decorations featured lots of ribbon-festooned candles. In the above photo, Penny Davis works to complete the candle decorations in time for the big day.    

Peers Prepare & Enjoy Healthy Smoothies & Juices

Smoothies and juicesAs part of the Whole Health Action Management (W.H.A.M.) plan that peers develop to manage their illness and achieve total wellness, better nutritional practices are encouraged. At Perry Wellness Center, popular ways to achieve a healthier diet include juicing and smoothies. These are two delicious methods to achieve maximum nutritional value in meals or snacks. Peers and staff alike enjoy making concoctions with fresh fruits and vegetables, many of which come from the raised garden beds on campus.

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Wellness Center Hours

Monday-Friday 7:30 to 3

Happy Patch Market Hours

Mon-Fri 9 to 6 | Sat 7-4

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Perry Wellness Center | 302 E. Furlow St., Americus, GA 31709 map | 229-924-2430 | 

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