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Independence Returns as Health and Wellness Sponsor for 2022 Wawa Welcome America: Freedom – Liberty

New Motivation Monday event and Mental Health First Aid training among this year’s offerings

Independence Blue Cross (Independence) returns for a fourth year as the official Health and Wellness sponsor of Philadelphia’s annual Wawa Welcome America Festival: Freedom – Liberty June 19 through July 4, 2022.

Wawa Welcome America in its 30th year will return to the Parkway for the July 4 Concert and Fireworks after two years of necessary relocation due to COVID-19. This year’s festival will feature 16 days of free multicultural and multigenerational events across the city. Wawa Welcome America remains committed to producing in-person events in a safe and responsible manner while encouraging residents and visitors alike to celebrate together.

Wawa Welcome America continues to partner with the African American Museum in Philadelphia and Visit Philadelphia to expand the festival to include Juneteenth programming under the banner, Freedom-Liberty. In its second year, the collaborative effort will continue to provide opportunities to explore the historical significance and thematic ties between Juneteenth and July 4.

Independence’s sponsorship will include support of two health-focused activities:

Motivation Monday

As the Health and Wellness sponsor, Independence will present “Motivation Monday” from 4 to 9 p.m. on Monday, June 27 at Eakins Oval, 24th Street and Benjamin Franklin Parkway. This new signature event will offer the community fun and engaging ways to come together to practice positive mental, physical, and emotional well-being.

Activities will include:

  • Wellness Marketplace with healthy food choices and cooking demos from The Food Trust, and local businesses and vendors offering fitness-related apparel and experiences, including a HIIT workout, sunset yoga class and a fun moving and grooving Zumba class with Zumbini for mom (or dad) and baby.
  • Kid’s Zone featuring a play experience from the Philadelphia Union
  • Critical health information about colorectal cancer, the Go to Know Campaign, and free at-home screening tests from WURD Radio. WURD Radio is working with the Colorectal Cancer Alliance, Penn Medicine, Labcorp, and the Independence Blue Cross Foundation to raise awareness about the impact of colorectal cancer on the African American community.

Stay updated on this new event:

Mental Health First Aid

In partnership with Independence and the City of Philadelphia’s Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services, Welcome America will also promote, for the first time, opportunities for Philadelphians to receive Mental Health First Aid training. This public education program teaches people how to identify, understand, and respond to signs of behavioral health challenges or crises. Courses are offered online or in private group trainings and are segmented for adult, child, veteran, public safety, higher education, and older adult populations.

Registrants will have an opportunity to become certified Mental Health First Aid responders. Certified participants will receive two tickets to be front and center for the Wawa Welcome America July 4 Concert and Fireworks on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway.

To find out more about the Mental Health First Aid program and stay connected on all of the latest Wawa Welcome America details, visit the event website: