As part of Pope Francis’s new commission to create a better world post-COVID, the GWI is contributing a series of white papers on how wellness can provide a roadmap for world healing and growth.
The Global Wellness Institute (GWI), a nonprofit organization with a mission to empower wellness worldwide, announced that they have been chosen by the Vatican to collaborate on their ambitious new initiative to create a better, healthier and less unjust world in the aftermath of the Coronavirus epidemic.
In early April, Pope Francis announced a new COVID-19 commission focused not only on confronting the current crisis but also to visualize the world we need to build post-virus. The future of health and wellness is a key pillar of the Vatican initiative (in addition to ecology, economics and public security), and the GWI has been selected to provide a series of eight white papers proposing how a holistic concept of wellness could transform human life, including our workplaces, our built environment and our mental wellbeing.
The series is called “Resetting the World with Wellness.”
“We are deeply honored by the opportunity to contribute to this important Vatican initiative. Wellness is a vital concept to reset the world after COVID-19. Not only does wellness link mind, body, and spirit, it connects our individual self with community and planetary wellbeing and to our personal search for meaning, purpose and transcendence,” said Katherine Johnson and Ophelia Yeung, GWI’s senior researchers and directors of the Vatican project.
The Vatican’s COVID-19 Commission:
Pope Francis created the Vatican’s COVID-19 commission to “express the Church’s love for the entire human family during the pandemic” and because he’s convinced that we’re living through “a time of epochal change” and have an unprecedented opportunity to reflect on how to solve the socioeconomic, environmental and health challenges looming in our future. The commission is led by the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development (DPIHD); coordinated by Cardinal Peter Turkson (DPIHD Prefect), Mons. Bruno-Marie Duffé (Secretary), and Fr. Augusto Zampini (Adjunct Secretary); and divided into five working groups, each addressing a different aspect of the pandemic.
GWI is part of Working Group 2, which brings together public and private institutions, universities, the pontifical academies, social movements, and leading economists and entrepreneurs to create new research and thinking about a post-COVID future.
As Cardinal Turkson put it: “Group 2 has the task of night watch, like the sentry, to perceive the dawn. To do this, it is necessary to connect the best minds in the areas of ecology, the economy, health and public security. We need the concreteness of science…and prophecy and creativity." On top of supporting medical providers, the health taskforce has a mission of addressing the flaws in modern healthcare systems and promoting “integral health” (or wellness) and all its components: physical, mental, spiritual, emotional, social and environmental wellbeing.
The new resources will reach church leaders and the Vatican network, as well as global leaders and ordinary people, bringing GWI’s research to a vast audience.
GWI’s Vatican papers:
GWI’s white papers for the Vatican integrate facts, data, and best practices; employ interdisciplinary thinking; and are a call to action, recommending strategies that could help “reset” the world post-pandemic—with a new focus on prevention and a proactive wellness-based mindset.
Eight papers will be published; three are available now.
1) A New Vision for a Post COVID-19 Future summarizes the key concepts and practices of wellness and outlines how wellness can provide a roadmap for healing and growth as the world emerges from the pandemic.
2) Healthy Built Environments for Healthy People describes how our unhealthy built environment can cause both chronic and infectious diseases, as well as the roles that communities, businesses and governments can play in building healthier homes and communities for healthier people.
3) Work, Health and Dignity spotlights how the dangerous, unhealthy, inequitable and stressful work conditions that have been exposed by COVID-19 can spark a collective will for radical change that is necessary to bring health and dignity back to our working lives and workplaces.
In the coming weeks (each Wednesday), GWI Vatican papers on the following topics will be released: mental wellness (May 13), physical movement (May 20), social wellness and community (May 27), food and nourishment (June 3), and travel and wonder (June 10).