Wellness

Life Events and your Benefits

This article explains what qualifying life events are and the timeframe to make changes to your benefit plans if/when a qualifying life event occurs.

Will you experience a marriage, birth/adoption of a child or another qualifying life event in 2019?

A qualifying life event is a change in your personal situation. This could be a family change like a marriage, birth/adoption of a child, divorce, loss of other coverage or an employment change like a leave of absence or retirement.

Events like these may allow you to make changes to your benefit plans mid-year such as adding a dependent, enrolling in a plan you do not currently have, or cancelling coverage in a plan. If you are not sure if your event is considered a qualifying life event, review the Life Event webpage or visit ALEX, your personalized benefits counselor to help make this determination.

If you have a qualifying life event, when should you make changes to your benefit plans?Babyfeet

Mid-year life event changes are time-sensitive and typically need to be made within 30 days from the date of the qualifying life event. It is important to complete and submit the necessary paperwork to your human resources office in a timely manner.

What if you miss the 30-day window to make changes to your benefits mid-year?

If you miss the opportunity to make changes to your benefit plans mid-year, your next opportunity to make a change will be during the Annual Benefits Enrollment period. This period is held each Fall for coverage effective January 1 of the next calendar year.

You may also have another opportunity to make changes to your benefit plans mid-year if you experience a second or subsequent life event mid–year. For example, an employee gets married in January and does not make any benefits changes, then has an August employment change. The employee would have another 30-day window to make changes due to the August employment change.

Are you able to update your beneficiaries if you experience a qualifying life event?

Yes! Updating your beneficiary information does not require a qualifying life event. You may update your beneficiaries at any time throughout the year. Some of the plans that have beneficiaries are the life insurance plans, the health savings account and the retirement plans. Review the Beneficiary webpage for additional beneficiary information.

Reminder: You typically have just 30 days from the date of the qualifying life event to make changes to your benefit plans. Complete your research now so you know what to expect once your qualifying live event occurs.

Source: UW System Human Resources

Goat Yoga held May 10th

MAC21What a beautiful day for yoga with baby goats!  About 25 employees came out to enjoy the baby goats in the quad on Friday, May 10th.  We heard a lot of positive feedback from employees, and AlexGoat1BlackGoat1we all enjoyed GoatOnBackinteracting with the goats.  Thank you to Jen Jelenic, Alex Reichenberger, and Linda Schmitt for leading the yoga classes, to LaClare Farms for sharing their precious goats, to Amy DePeau for setting this up, and to BrownGoat1StandingLynn1PlankGoats2the Department of Employee Trust Funds (ETF) for sponsoring this event!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Interested in more goat yoga?  Here are some links:

Employee Assistance Program Transitions to FEI

Effective July 1, 2019, the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) vendor will be changing to FEI. The EAP program is a free, confidential service to you, your dependents, and anyone living in your household. Most of the features of the program will remain the same as they are today with some additional features and benefits.

Beginning July 1, 2019, you, or a member of your household, may contact FEI for services by calling (866) 274-4723 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week).

Some of the EAP services FEI provides are regarding:

  • Emotional Situations: relationships, parenting, grieving
  • Work/Life Challenges: child care, elder care, adoption
  • Legal and Financial Circumstances: managing expenses or debt, preparation of simple wills, child custody or child support

Additional access to FEI is available through their website. Visit https://www.feieap.com (Username: SOWI) to obtain educational information, useful links, help locating child and elder care providers, and self-assessments.

The program’s counseling services are available at no cost to you and/or your household members. Professional counselors are available both via phone and in-person in our local area. You can receive up to 6 sessions, per issue, per year. If additional counseling or services are recommended, the counselor will assist you with accessing providers covered by your health insurance plan.

Those currently receiving counseling sessions: Since the EAP is a confidential program, your employer does not know what services, if any, are being used by an employee. If you are one of the employees currently receiving counseling sessions, your sessions will end on June 30, 2019. Our current EAP administrator will send each of the counselors currently working with employees a letter regarding the transition to FEI to help communicate the change; however, you may also want to talk to your current counselor to find out if they are an affiliate of FEI.

  • If the counselor is already a FEI affiliate you may begin scheduling your sessions to occur on/after July 1st with the same counselor.
  • If the counselor is not yet part of FEI’s network, the counselor may work with FEI to become an affiliate so you may continue your sessions with the same counselor on/after July 1st. If your counselor does not become an affiliate of FEI or you wish to see a different counselor, you should call the FEI phone number above for additional assistance.

Privacy is strictly protected within legal limits. Information about your contact with FEI will not be released without your prior consent except in cases of imminent threat of harm or when abuse of a child or vulnerable adult may be occurring.

You may not need assistance now, but if you or a household member needs help in the future, FEI is available. While we expect the transition to FEI to go smoothly, employees will continue to see improvements in processes or resources for the next few months as FEI begins to serve our employees.

Please contact Human Resources at (920) 465-2390 or hr@uwgb.edu with any questions.

Mini Greek Chicken Kabobs recipe

Ingredients

For the marinade:
1½ Tbsp canola oil
½ tsp lemon zest
2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1½ tsp Worcestershire sauce
1½ tsp dried oregano leavesTeriyaki-Chicken-Kabobs-GI-365-22
½ tsp dried dill
1 medium garlic clove, minced
⅛ tsp dried pepper flakes
¼ tsp salt

For the kabobs:
Canola oil cooking spray
4 chicken tenders (8 oz total), rinsed and patted dry, cut crosswise into small chunks
½ small green bell pepper, cut into 16 cubes
16 grape cherry tomatoes
1 small yellow squash, quartered lengthwise and cut into 16 pieces
16 bamboo skewers (6-in each)

Directions

  1. Combine marinade ingredients in a quart-sized resealable plastic bag, seal tightly, and toss back and forth until well blended. Remove 2 tablespoons mixture, place in a small bowl, and set aside. Add chicken pieces to bag with the remaining marinade, seal tightly, and toss back and forth to coat completely. Refrigerate 1 hour, turning occasionally.
  2. Coat grill rack with cooking spray and preheat grill to medium-high heat.
  3. Remove chicken from marinade and discard marinade. Thread piece of chicken and each vegetable per skewer in this order: pepper, chicken, tomato, and squash. Repeat with remaining skewers.
  4. Place skewers on a grill rack and cook 5 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink in center and juices run clear, turning frequently and being careful not to overcook. Remove from grill, place on a serving platter, and brush reserved 2 tablespoons marinade evenly over all. Serve warm.

Serves 8

Serving size: 2 kabobs. Each serving provides: 60 calories, 3 g total fat, 0.4 g saturated fat, 6 g protein, 15 mg cholesterol, 80 mg sodium, 2 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 1 g sugar

 

Source: American Diabetes Association 

Make time to play!

The secret to happiness, like the secret to success, has long been studied and debated. What makes one person happy could stress out someone else (take skydiving, for example). Still, psychologists and other researchers have found that some activities and mind-sets appear more than likely to increase joy and contentment. Today – try the following tip to increase your happiness and reduce your stress!

Take time to play. Playfulness helps anyone of any age be more resilient, happy, flexible, and creative. It teaches us to manage and transform stress and negative emotions, too. It’s easy to be playful with pets and children. But looking for ways to play with grown-ups at work and home is a great way to increase the strength and health of your relationships.

Article from the StayWell Company, LLC1280px-Family_playing_a_board_game_(1)

Strawberry Spread Recipe

We’re not talking about making preserves here, just a quick spread to refrigerate and use within a week. Stir it into vanilla yogurt—it’s betteStrawberry spreadr than fruit on the bottom.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups strawberries
  • 1/4 cup sugar (or 3 tbsp. granulated sugar substitute)
  • 1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice

Directions

Put berries in a small saucepan. Add sugar (or sweetener) and lemon juice. Cook on high just until the mixture starts to boil. Turn heat to medium and stir frequently, mashing berries with a spatula, to keep from burning or sticking to the bottom of the pan.

After about 15 minutes, most of the liquid should be cooked off. When you reach your desired consistency, let it cool and pour into a container to refrigerate.

Makes about 1 cup

Each tablespoon serving contains about 18 calories, 0 g fat, 0 g cholesterol, 0 g sodium, 5 g carbohydrate, less than 1 g dietary fiber, 4 g sugars, and 0 g protein.

Recipe from the StayWell Company, LLC.

 

Get Crafty

Whether you’re an avid crafter or you’ve never picked up a paintbrush, knitting needle, awl, or whittling tool in your life, you could benefit from a little craft time. Creative hobbies are calming, and they help give your mind a break from worrying thoughts.

So challenge yourself today to create something. A drawing, a scrapbook, a poem, a wood-carved miniature of your neighbor’s dog—it doesn’t matter what you create, just that you’re creating. You’ll end up with not only a cool thing of your own design, but also, potentially, a more relaxed and worry-free mind.

Article from the StayWell Company, LLCcrafting

Backyard Chickens Lunch ‘n Learn held April 30th


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Thank you to Liz Biversie, Agricultural Educator with UW-Madison Division of Extension, for presenting the Backyard Chickens Lunch ‘n Learn on Tuesday, April 30th to 12 employees and students!  She IMG_0238shared a wealth of information including things to think about when considering raising backyard chickens, types of chickens that are good for laying eggs or providing meat, how much space you would need for each chicken, potential predators and diseases, and helpful resources available on the UW-Madison Division of Extension website.

Dr. Ron Kean, UW-Madison Division of Extension Poultry Specialist, also provided knowledgeable IMG_0237answers to our questions.  Monika Pynaker, UWGB Manager of Network Services, shared stories of her much-loved chickens, as well as helpful insight and pictures of her leghorns and their nice chicken coup!  Thank you to everyone who attended as well as Liz, Ron and Monika!

 

Wellness Webinar: Practicing Self-Compassion

Many of us instinctively beat ourselves up for failing to meet our goals, but there is an alternative. Find out how self-compassion facilitates goal pursuit by helping us regulate our emotions and maintain our belief in our ability to change.

Join us to learn about:Heart shaped splash

  • What is self-compassion
  • How it helps us meet our goals
  • Misconceptions about self-compassion

Date: Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Time: 12:00 to 12:30 p.m.

Location: Cofrin Library, 7th floor, room 710C

No need to RSVP – just mark your calendar to join us, and bring your lunch!

You could also participate in this webinar at your workstation if you prefer – please visit wellwisconsin.staywell.com and go to Webinars to register.

All webinars are recorded and available to Well Wisconsin Program participants on the StayWell wellness portal after the event date.

To access the StayWell wellness portal, you must be an employee, retiree, or spouse enrolled in the State of Wisconsin or Wisconsin Public Employers Group Health Insurance Programs.