Throughout January 2022, roughly 1.5 million people across the UK were in contact with NHS-funded mental health support services – an increase of over 200,000 people when compared to January 2021. This increase is why events such as Mental Health Awareness Week, taking place from 9-15 May, have become integral in the movement to promote positive mental wellbeing.
Recognising the significance of Mental Health Awareness Week 2022 and its theme of ‘loneliness’, colleagues from across the Seetec Group are running events, attending training programmes and continuing to support participants on their journey to improving their mental wellbeing.
In Seetec Ireland, front-line managers are undertaking a new Mental Health First Aid training programme provided by Mental Health Ireland. The course is designed to teach individuals how to communicate with and help a person who may have a developing mental health problem, be experiencing worsening of their mental health or suffering a mental health crisis.
Speaking on the importance of mental health awareness, Operations Director Georgina Murphy said “At Seetec, leading with compassion means acknowledging the mental health struggles people face in the modern world. Training our staff to identify and assist colleagues undergoing mental health crises ensures our employees feel safe and supported by us. Increasing our employee counselling sessions from six to eight is another measure we’re taking. I believe efforts like this go a long way towards destigmatising mental health issues.”
Our Employability and Health division is sharing the stories of participants that have overcome challenges and seen an improvement in their mental wellbeing, looking to inspire others to seek support and attend wellbeing events. An internal initiative called ‘The Listening Ear’ has also been launched, providing a safe and confidential space for colleagues to seek advice and support for their own mental health.
You can find out more about our new Listening Ear initiative by tuning in to our broadcast with CHAOS TV on Wednesday the 11th of May via our Facebook page.
The pandemic has resulted in new ways of working and learning for Seetec Outsource, our apprenticeships, education and skills division, and Mental Health Awareness Week provides an opportunity to focus on how we combat isolation and encourage good mental health while adapting to new and different working practices.
Suki Binning, Executive Director – Justice, Social Care and Skills, explained: “Throughout Covid-19, we adapted our provision to support colleagues and learners remotely while addressing the inevitable impact of successive lockdowns on their mental health and wellbeing.
“As we emerge from the pandemic – and embrace the remote and hybrid working practices that have become increasingly commonplace – tackling loneliness remains a priority for Seetec Outsource. We will continue to navigate new ways of working and learning that maximise the benefits of modern technology while facilitating human connection at every opportunity.”
Colleagues in our justice and social care division, Interventions Alliance, are taking the extra step to encourage the positive mental wellbeing of participants by running a Mental Health Matters course throughout the entire month of May. The course includes myth busting and exploring facts on common conditions, challenging stigmas and helping individuals to plan for the future.
Our CFO Activity Hubs will also be commemorating Mental Health Awareness Week through running a series of group activities designed to raise awareness of mental health challenges, build confidence and encourage participants to openly discuss their mental wellbeing through creative writing.
If you or someone you know is struggling with their mental health, you can access vital support services and organisations by clicking here.