bike donation

The Payson Police Department donated 10 bikes to the Southwest Behavioral & Health Services InSHAPE program. Photographed left to right starting in the back is: Tina (Dispatcher), Lt. Jason Hazelo, Sgt. Joni Varga, Gretchen McAnerny-Health Mentor, Officer Joseph Oldeshculte, and Leslie Zickefoose-Property and Evidence.

The Payson Police Department recently donated 10 bicycles to Southwest Behavioral & Health Services.

The bikes will be used for the organization’s InSHAPE program, a lifestyle program that helps people with serious mental illness and obesity lose weight. InSHAPE leadership will give the bikes to participants who successfully complete their health goals.

The donated bikes were lost or stolen and went unclaimed for more than 30 days.

“Once all efforts are exhausted to find the owners, the Payson Police Department will donate bikes to worthwhile community organizations,” said Leslie Zickefoose, Payson Police Department property and evidence.

“Southwest Behavioral & Health Services’ InSHAPE program is a perfect place for these bikes to be put to good use,” she said.

According to Marcie Herzog, InSHAPE program director, 1 in 25 adults in the United States experiences a serious mental illness in a given year that substantially interferes with or limits one or more major life activities. And people with diagnosed serious mental illness are one of the most disadvantaged groups in the United States in terms of life expectancy.

The InSHAPE program helps people with serious mental illness and severe obesity lose weight. It works by pairing participants with a personal health mentor who is trained in fitness and nutrition, as well as in how to motivate people with mental-health challenges. Focus areas include physical fitness, healthy eating, smoking cessation, and access to quality health care.

“Our InSHAPE program follows a recovery philosophy, including a personal approach that is self-determined, self-directed and self-managed,” said Herzog.

“We help identify achievable goals that are set by program participants. Since the program is considered a lifestyle program, individuals take what they learn and incorporate it into their everyday routine with the goal that the participants will make long-standing lifestyle changes. Being social and engaged in the community is encouraged and is an important part of the program. The bike donations are the perfect incentive to keep the momentum going and we are so thankful to our local police department for supporting our efforts,” she added.

InSHAPE was founded in New Hampshire in 2003 after researchers at Dartmouth released the results of a study that demonstrated increasing activity, mood and social confidence improved overall physical health. Collaborating with various behavioral health agencies across the country, the nationally recognized program is now offered in 28 states and locally through Southwest Behavioral & Health Services in Maricopa, Coconino and Mohave counties.

Individuals interested in participating in the InSHAPE program must be a member of Southwest Behavioral & Health Services. For more information about the program, visit www.sbhservices.org or call 602-265-8338.

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