The Missouri Council for Activity & Nutrition (MOCAN) is excited to announce their April Quarterly Conference on Thursday, April 20, 2023, from 9:00 to 11:00 am! This event is hosted by the MOCAN Food Systems Work Group and their SNAP For U team.

The conference will explore the problem of food insecurity, specifically within the college student population, as well as facilitators, barriers, and what we can do at all levels of influence. There will be a full Q&A panel, so come prepared with all your questions.

To learn more and see the full panel of speakers, click here. For the full conference agenda, click here.


Candace Rodman, Nutrition & Health Specialist
MOCAN Director

(Joplin, MO) – This summer, the Joplin Parks & Recreation Department will offer youth t-ball programs at the Joplin Athletic Complex.

The Youth T-Ball League is for children ages five and six and will begin on June 6 with games at 6:00 and 7:00 pm. Players will receive a jersey, hat, and trophy. The cost is $45 per player, and pre-registration is required by May 15. There is an early bird special for registrations that take place before March 31 at 11:59 pm. Those who register before this deadline will receive $10 off.

About Joplin Parks & Recreation

The Joplin Parks and Recreation Department provides quality parks, services, and programs to enhance the quality of life for the citizens of Joplin and surrounding communities. Learn more at


Lynn Iliff Onstot, Public Information Officer
City of Joplin
417.624.0820, ext. 204

Practicing self-care is essential to our mental well-being. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, self-care can help manage stress, lower the risk of illness, and increase energy levels. Self-care comes in all different forms and looks different for everyone. To create your own self-care plan, you need to determine your stressors and tailor your plan to what might alleviate the stress.

Practice Gratitude

Reminding yourself each day of all the things you are thankful for is a great way to reduce stress. Write them in a journal and when you are feeling down, read the entries to be reminded of your blessings.

Prioritize Physical Health 

When your body feels better, your mind will feel better. This includes making sure you’re getting enough exercise, eating a balanced diet, staying hydrated, and getting enough sleep. Exercise doesn’t have to be strenuous, for some it might be walking 20-30 minutes a day. With sleep, it is a good practice to stick to a schedule and not have any blue light exposure from a phone or computer for at least 30 minutes before going to bed. The CDC recommends at least seven hours of sleep for adults.

Set Goals

Having a to-do list for the day is a great way to feel accomplished and contribute to mental well-being. Start out with little things you know you can accomplish and work up to bigger things. Being able to check something off a list can give you a great sense of accomplishment. Always focus on what you have completed during the day and not what you were unable to complete.

Take Time for Yourself

Set aside time at least once a week to do something that is just for you. Maybe that’s going on a walk to clear your head, reading your favorite book, or going to your favorite store. You should be your top priority because prioritizing yourself will do wonders for your mental well-being. 

Start by picking one self-care practice and go from there. Once you get started, you won’t want to stop!



Kaitlyn Collins, Health Promotions and Wellness Intern
Missouri Southern State University

The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends getting your body moving at least 150 minutes per week. It does not have to be strenuous activity. Just simply get up and move. With virtual fitness being a new trend, it has become easier to find ways to get in simple, easy workouts. The AHA offers many fitness resources, including information on fitness basics, getting active, and staying motivated.

Between social media and a variety of fitness apps out there, it has become very easy to find virtual workouts. Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube are three big sites to keep in mind. Many fitness influencers will post their daily workouts with instructions on how to do the exercises. Some will even post beginner workouts for those who are unsure about where to start. These workouts can be altered for use at home, the gym, wherever it needs to be done. And these are all quick and easy resources that are free! 

FitOn is an app that also provides free workouts from many different trainers. From cardio and strength training to mobility and meditation, they have it all. This would be a great source if you are not sure where to start your fitness journey. All the workouts provide the time it will take to complete as well as the intensity level, so you know what you are getting into beforehand. They even have quite a few workouts that you can do from your desk at work! The MU Extension also has a great five-minute mindfulness exercise you do at your desk if you need to take a quick breather.

These quick and easy resources make it easier for someone with a busy schedule to get a workout in during lunch, at home before or after dinner. This may be easier than trying to make time to get to the gym before or after work or attending a workout class. These resources also provide quick, easy, healthy meal options. Many of the fitness influencers on social media will share meals they make throughout the week, including the recipes and step-by-step instructions. 

Utilizing these free resources can be a great way to kick start for your fitness journey!

Always consult your physician before starting an exercise program.


Kaitlyn Collins, Health Promotions and Wellness Intern
Missouri Southern State University

With the onset of the COVID-19 public health emergency in March 2020, states have been prohibited from removing individuals from Medicaid for not meeting the eligibility standards for coverage. The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2023 ends continuous Medicaid eligibility on Friday, March 31. Beginning Saturday, April 1, states will have 14 months to reverify the eligibility of all current Medicaid participants.

Currently, there are 1.4 million Missourians enrolled in MO HealthNet who must have their eligibility verified sometime during the next year. While it is certain that some current participants no longer qualify for coverage, the vast majority still do. For the first time in more than three years, the state now must document that participants, in fact, qualify for their coverage to continue.

Eligible participants who fail to complete the required verification of their eligibility will lose their coverage. Hospitals can reduce this risk by helping their Medicaid-covered patients complete the state’s review process.

The Missouri Hospital Association compiled resources and strategies that hospitals can use to help their patients prepare for and successfully verify their eligibility. This compendium, “PHE Unwinding: The Reverification of Medicaid Participant Eligibility,” is accessible on MHA’s website and will be updated frequently with news, policy updates and performance data as Medicaid reverification progresses. In addition, copies of public awareness flyers to display in patient waiting and contact areas will be mailed this week to your hospital’s public relations representative.

For questions about the state’s Medicaid reverification process or available MHA resources, please contact me at, or 573.893.3700, ext. 1338.


Brian Kinkade, Vice President
Children’s Health and Medicaid Advocacy

Freeman Health System is pleased to host the Work@Health Certification Training by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on March 30 and 31, 2023.

The training is made possible by the St. Louis Area Business Health Coalition and the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services and is supported by the Missouri Council for Activity and Nutrition (MOCAN) Worksite Workgroup.

The training is designed to enhance employer knowledge of strategies and tools for the planning, implementation, and evaluation of workplace health interventions. The science-based curriculum includes eight core modules that provide employers with the skills to implement a comprehensive worksite wellness program using interventions that principally address chronic health conditions, such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, arthritis, and obesity. Lunch is included on the first day and breakfast will be offered on the second.

For questions, please contact Annie Fitzgerald at