Ambassador Training Level One with Pam Townend
Co-Ordinator for the 10,000 Toes Campaign
Welcome! How awesome that you have decided you want to be an ambassador for the 10000 toes Campaign. This journey, you are about to embark on, is going to be both exciting for yourself and those family and friends that you are in contact with.
The sad reality about diabetes is that it has never impacted our lives in the past as it does now.
So what’s changed? Us! We exercise less – we jump in a car or taxi instead of walking to the shop. We consume foods in large quantities that simply are just not good for us. We’ve reduced or even stopped growing our own veggies, content on living on packaged or fast foods. All of us have simply become less active and not modified our food intake to reflect this.
During this training period, you are going to meet some key people that work in the health space and they will give you some insights and reference points as you begin your journey. The training will take you approximately 30 minutes to complete and at the end, you will be a Level 1 Ambassador.
To begin let’s have an overview of the 10K Toes Campaign.
Diabetes can be a part of all our lives so easily, just like I discovered from an early age. Our history can play such a pivotal role in our futures, so it’s always good to understand our beginnings. I’ve invited Geraldine to take us back a decade or two and give us some background on how health got into our veins in the very beginning.
Every mission starts with a story and ours was pivotal. In 1863, our newly formed grass-roots organisation faced a health crisis. All of our leaders were too sick to attend a scheduled meeting, halting the activities of our fledgling organisation. Through this crisis, a “radical” vision was presented of a new healthcare approach that emphasised preventing illness, enhancing the quality of life and promoting longevity through proper nutrition, exercise, sanitation and spiritual connection with God.
Although this approach was contrary to the health beliefs of the day (an era when doctors prescribed smoking to their patients), the seed had been planted for what would become the greatest health and lifestyle “disrupter” of the modern era.
Our first health facilities, which we called sanitariums, were places where patients not only came for treatment but where their entire family would learn to be well. Through our whole-person health approach, this included a person’s physical, mental, emotional, social and spiritual health.
Research and Education
From these humble beginnings, we expanded into health research and health education in universities and colleges. We cared for the health of people through our 175 hospitals and 385 medical clinics. We created and launched major health education initiatives (including the fight against smoking); established the early health food industry; cared for over 14 million needy and displaced people through our aid and development initiatives, and had a positive health and lifestyle impact on millions of people through the 130+ countries we now operate in.
One of our major contributions to lifestyle wellness has been our long-term research into, promotion and practice of whole food plant-based nutrition. This is now recognised through scientific literature as a major contributor to achieving wellness. In fact, Seventh-day Adventists in Loma Linda, USA were identified by Dan Buettner in National Geographic as being one of 5 regions in the world called Blue Zones – where people live healthier for longer. Adventist health principles and lifestyle were key contributors to their longevity, with Adventists living up to ten more quality years than the rest of the nation.
Adventist Health today
Through our advances in lifestyle research, recognise that wellness encompasses more than just our mind, body and good nutrition. Whole-person health encompasses physical, social, emotional, spiritual, intellectual, environmental and vocational dimensions, which form the foundation of our approach to wellness today.
Not only did our “radical” vision recreate the wellness of our leaders back in 1863, but now over 150 years later, the vision to recreate wellness for everyone remains at the core of our movement.
That is why the 10,000 toes campaign is so important, as it aims to stop this growing diabetes pandemic in the Pacific. Everyone knows a family member or friend whose life has been affected by diabetes and other non-communicable diseases. We can’t do this alone. We need to collaborate and unite with the government, NGO’s, the health industry, health professionals, churches and you to combat this pandemic.
History has prepared us for such a time as this!
The time is now!
Will you join us in our mission to stamp out diabetes!
Pam: I’ve always loved history, it was one of my favourite subjects at school, so I enjoyed that walk down memory lane. What about today, it can get so confusing – where can I go to get reliable health information. Dr Andrew Pennington joins us now to share about the 7 dimensions to health and some awesome resources that we can tap into.
Dr Andrew Pennington
The 10,000 Toes Campaign promotes and advocates a whole-person health approach through the 7 Dimensions of Wellness. This incorporates the following dimensions:
- Emotionally Thriving
This is when you feel content. Your outlook is positive and you are able to work through stressful situations and emotionally challenging events.
- Physically Energised
Consuming the optimal diet, being physically active and getting rejuvenating rest. Being well hydrated, not smoking and avoiding toxic substances will help you live the best life, full of vigour and vitality.
- Socially Connected
The quality of your social connections can make a big difference in your health. We are created to be social beings and live in a community!
- Spiritually Empowered
This is about living an abundant life. Your connection to God will give your life purpose, meaning and hope.
- Vocationally Enriched
Activities that enrich your life including having a heart for service can add that extra spark in your day and improve your wellness!
- Intellectually Engaged
Approaching life with a love for learning. Sharing what you have learned will not only consolidate this in your own mind but help others to grow and reach their potential. Spending time in self-reflection and critical thinking also sharpens the brain.
- Environmentally Attuned
Enjoying nature and living in a clean environment with adequate sunlight, clean air benefits our health. It is also important to give back to the environment.
This framework incorporates all aspects of life that influence and impacts the health and happiness of an individual. Our aim is to inspire and empower people on a wellness journey so they can live their best life.
Pam: So how can we take all of what we’ve heard, and apply that to becoming a 10,000 Toes Ambassador? George Kwong is an Ambassador, living in Fiji and he is going to share with us what that might look like.
George: Regional Ambassador, Fiji
My name is George Kwong and I am an Ambassador for 10,000 toes.
Imagine for a moment we are all in a large ship sailing in the Pacific Ocean—when all of a sudden a storm rages; the howling winds rise, huge waves come crashing into the boat and we are tossed from side to side. When amidst our fear, anxiety and panic the captain yells out in his hailer “Help! Help! All Hands On Deck! We need you to help. Bail the water out, mend the sails, and take care of the elderly and the children and of each other! We need everyone to help.”
10,000 Toes is calling for help! We need Ambassadors to help our people through this storm of diabetes and lifestyle diseases raging through the Pacific. We are a movement of grassroots people, each of us is an important spoke of this wheel that drives this movement forward. Our families, our relatives, our people are our greatest assets and we hold them dear to our hearts. They need to be protected and empowered, so we all become tools of hope for others. We will extend this web of wellness and healthy living through our communities, villages, towns, cities and our island nations.
What does it mean to be an Ambassador
As an Ambassador, you will be trained and mentored. You will work with our friendly fellow Ambassadors who will teach, guide and support you with everything you need to know;
- Expand your knowledge of diabetes and understand more about lifestyle diseases.
- Learn what ways you could be of help to diabetics and your role as a facilitator for well being for all.
- Be fully conversant with how to screen and do health assessments—the kind of stuff our nurses and doctors do.
- Learn and gain more skills and experience in community service. Work as a team with various NGOs and Ministry of Health personnel.
- Experiencing how to be part of a community Health Expo and how to organise your own community health programs and meetings.
There are five levels of Ambassadorship. The first being a Level 1. Everyone enters in at this stage and completes the training, just as you are doing today. As time goes on mentoring opportunities will arise for you to move up into other levels of Ambassadorship. These levels are:
Two Team Ambassador
Three Zone Ambassador
Four Lead Ambassador
Five Regional Ambassador.
Each level has its own criteria and key performance indicators that need to be meet on a yearly basis.
Like anything else, the more work and enthusiasm you put in, the faster your movements will be up the ranks. Anyone is welcome to join if you are of the age of 18 and above. We are calling for people from all walks of life. No matter what race, religion colour or creed – you are most welcome to become an ambassador for 10,000 Toes.
What reward do I get from doing this work?
To be an ambassador is to offer your service on a voluntary basis. We join because:
- We believe in the cause. It is built on strong inclusive values of compassion, care and love for our fellow beings.
- There is a health crisis and we want to bring attention to our communities on the urgent need to turn the tide of diabetes. We are here for others.
- Knowledge is Power. Learning and educating is an essential tool in this time of crisis. As Ambassadors are trained so many others may learn from us.
- We believe in and live what we teach. As Ambassadors, we focus on living a healthy, strong, vibrant and wholistic lifestyle as we lead the charge in this movement.
We do not want our ship to sink. Tragically we will continue to lose many lives if we do not get “all hands on deck,” So the time is now! Do not hesitate. Become a part of this great lifesaving movement and be an active 10,000 Toes Ambassador NOW!
Being an Ambassador is much more than just a title. As George said, it’s about being involved – all hands on deck. No matter where your passion lies, we need you. Together we can reshape our future to be a healthier and happy one.
We are so excited that our 10,000 toes family is growing. You know we have the vision to have 10,000 active ambassadors by the end of 2025. Then we will be a movement! And our dream to turn the tide on diabetes will become a reality.
Supporting us on on Facebook and Instagram, checking out the 10,000 toes webpage, signing up to the Elia Wellness digital platform and reading our quarterly newsletter is just a couple of important ways to show your continued support. These simple actions will also keep you abreast on our latest achievements, news from around other parts of the Pacific, fundraising ideas and key events that are being planned. So please keep an eye on all these media outlets and become involved where you feel comfortable.
A short survey will be sent to you upon completion of the training. You must complete this in order to finalise your training. You will then receive a Certificate and at some stage, a Team Ambassador will be in contact with you. If you have any further questions please don’t hesitate to contact us through the email found on our webpage.
So welcome once again to the 10,0000 Toes Family!