by Brianna Crandall — May 13, 2020 — In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Delos, a wellness real estate and technology company and founder of the International WELL Building Institute for healthy buildings, has formed a collaboration with Humanity 2.0 Well Being and the Pontifical Orientale Institute to upgrade the Vatican’s Orientale’s residences with its evidence-based health and wellness technologies and solutions.
Rome and the Vatican are slowly emerging from the coronavirus lockdown, providing a critical window to help build health resilience, prevent disease and reduce viral transmission in houses, offices, parishes and school facilities through scientifically supported technologies and solutions.
Delos, a trusted scientific authority on healthy buildings, has customized a program for the Pontifical Orientale Institute that includes air-purification and surface-cleaning technology, circadian lighting and other evidence-based interventions designed to help support immune health, reduce stress, improve sleep quality and promote overall well-being.
In partnership with Humanity 2.0 Well Being, the wellness platform created in collaboration with the Vatican (Holy See), the Pontifical Orientale Institute was identified due to its rich history and innovative leadership, as well as vital role in convening global interfaith groups at the Vatican. Led by Rev. David Nazar, S.J., the Pontifical Oriental Institute was created by Pope Benedict XV in 1917, and is currently a school of higher studies that has as its particular mission the service of the Oriental Churches.
Father David Nazar, rector of the Orientale, remarked:
The Catholic Church runs the largest governmental school system in the world, serving in over 100 countries — some over 1,000 years old — and runs one-quarter of the world’s health-care institutions. Its preoccupation has always been the care of the entire person and of society. Recent information technology and wellness sciences have brought to the fore much-needed insights into humanizing the educational environment. Our students come from over 40 countries, many without deep resources, and student depression is an increasing phenomenon in a world that is struggling to find a common purpose. COVID-19 has shown us how fragile we are. With Delos and Humanity 2.0 Well Being, we will be implementing health and wellness tools that address these contemporary educational challenges, helping us continue our focus on strengthening the whole person — body, mind, and spirit. Pope Francis, with his focus on human ecology, has asked church institutions to show leadership. With Delos and Humanity 2.0 Well Being, the Orientale is doing just that.
Paul Scialla, founder and CEO of Delos, stated:
We are honored to have been asked to customize our suite of research and technology solutions accrued over years into a first-of-its-kind program for the Pontifical Orientale Institute residences at this pivotal time. We know that buildings have a profound impact on human health, but the current pandemic has magnified the essential need for evidence-based health interventions in the indoor environment, which are being shared with the Vatican and its global network.
Given the Catholic Church’s global footprint, comprising 200,000 colleges, universities and other schools, 220,000 parishes, 117,000 nursing home and senior living facilities, and 10,000 orphanages in 196 countries, Delos’ Vatican program at the Orientale will be made available more widely to the Catholic Church to educate and shape institutional best practices.
Morad Fareed, CEO of Humanity 2.0 Well Being and a co-founder of Delos, pointed out:
Through upgrading our educational buildings with health innovations, we are actually building human capacity at one of its most formative periods. Father Nazar and the Orientale have a heritage as pioneers, and this initial partnership is both a template and a catalyst for greater strategic collaboration with the Vatican at this defining time.
With the support of Pope Francis, and in conjunction with Fr. William Watson, S.J., vice president for advancement for the Orientale, the Orientale’s residences, offices, classrooms and library/conference facilities were significantly upgraded in 2017 — the 100th anniversary of the Institute. These same residences will now become the first residences in the Vatican to implement Delos’ technologies and solutions.
The collaboration with Delos and Humanity 2.0 Well Being is advanced by the Orientale’s initiative to upgrade the technology infrastructure for all Orientale classrooms to enable the most comprehensive distance learning capabilities of any papal university, made possible through partnership with UBS partners James Mallahan and Mark Russo.
Delos is the founder of the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI), which created the WELL Building Standard, currently being implemented in over 4,000 projects, surpassing 500 million square feet of wellness real estate in 61 countries. IWBI recently established a Task Force on COVID-19 and Other Respiratory Infections — co-chaired by the 17th Surgeon General of the United States Richard Carmona, Former Robert Wood Johnson Foundation President and CEO Dr. Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, UCLA’s Dr. Jonathan Fielding, and Harvard School of Public Health’s Joseph Allen — to advance the role of buildings in protecting and enhancing health.
The Delos COVID-19 Resource Center provides up-to-date, actionable insights in the areas of Prevention, Resilience, Recovery and Wellness to help maintain health and well-being during these uncertain times.