How one of the biggest cities in Finland pilots wellbeing coaching as an online service
In this article we describe how the City of Vantaa is piloting wellbeing coaching directed to people in certain risk-categories. In this pilot the City of Vantaa is testing different online coaching tools to simplify the communication between the customer and the coach. Coach4Pro is one of the platforms in this test.
The Coach4Pro platform enables the coach to guide, encourage and share information about healthy habits with minimum effort. Writers of this post are project specialist Marianna Suonpää and project coordinator Inka Mannoja, both working for the City of Vantaa.
Co-operation between the City Of Vantaa and Coach4Pro
In this pilot, the City of Vantaa and Coach4Pro test the effectiveness of long lasting wellbeing coaching. The working name for this coaching is Wellbeing Mentoring, and three target groups have been chosen as pilot clients for a two-year period, 2020-2021. Participants of the pilot falls into certain risk groups due to their health situation. They are identified among clients in public sector health centers, pregnant women and students in vocational schools.
Mentoring and the content
In the beginning of the mentoring participants physically meet the mentor. In this meeting the participant’s situation and habits are discussed and goals for the mentoring are set. The mentoring lasts for one year and consists of online coaching, one-to-one meetings and group meetings. After one year mentoring, there will be a one year long follow-up period. This period is to ensure that the new habits have been integrated as a part of their normal life.
One of the tools used in the mentoring is Coach4Pro. It’s used to assign tasks to the participants. Tasks are used to encourage participants to reflect on which factors affect the wellbeing. In addition, the mentor shares information about exercises, nutrition and sleep. With Coach4Pro this can be done wherever and whenever.
Screenshot from the project’s website. (Preventive healthcare is investment for the future)
Currently one hundred persons are participating in the mentoring. Participation has been high, very few persons have dropped out due to health reasons.
The mentor in this pilot is Inka Mannoja, who’s guiding the participants throughout the programme. Among the participants that have been in the programme for nine months one can see improvement in health indicators. Activity has improved and some participants have lost weight. Participants themselves have reported that they are in better physical shape, their thinking has changed and they cope better in daily life.
What is typical to mentoring, is that the starting point and goals are different for different participants. This means that the content of the mentoring also has to be somewhat different. Things to consider are how to find time for daily exercise, how to find a new hobby, how to control one’s weight, how to monitor thinking habits and sleeping and eating well. All these have a big impact to the sustainable wellbeing, and that’s why they are key elements in mentoring.
From pilot to normal operation
Testing and development of this mentoring service continues till fall 2021. Feedback and experiences from the program are collected continuously. This data is used to evaluate how useful the service is and what the impact of the service has. The goal is to integrate this service as part of the basic services of the City of Vantaa.
Link to the pages of pilot: https://kunnolla.fi/
If you want to get more information, please contact:
Project Specialist Marianna Suonpää, 043 826 8121, marianna.suonpaa(at)vantaa.fi
Project Coordinator Inka Mannoja 040 190 7136, inka.mannoja(at)vantaa.fi