Its #WorldmentalHealthDay, a day to raise awareness around mental health and wellbeing. Something we, as a company, are paying a lot more attention to and raising awareness. It all started when we decided to join the South Tyneside Health Care Alliance this year, its a decision we have not regretted! So many doors have been opened through the Alliance, including the opportunity to raise awareness of mental health and wellbeing.
Our health advocates attended the Mental Health First Aid, half day course in July- with full intention of completing the full course in November. Our advocates have since planned a number of activities and events to raise awareness. The key message being, the importance of maintaining good mental wellbeing and the importance of maintaining key friendships.
One of the main things that stuck with our health advocates was the importance of talking to each other. It doesn’t even have to be about mental health, just a day to day catch up. You don’t always know what the other person is going through, in their private life, and that little bit of conversation might just make their day.
During the MHFA course, we were given a number of personal examples where small, almost missed interactions were key in making a difference. A simple hello is sometimes enough to stop someone from doing something they might regret – Aaron, Cell Pack health advocate.
This #worldmentalhealthday the message is to ask if someone is OK twice. Often, people will respond with the usual “yea fine, you?” and if their is anything they want to talk about, the opportunity is gone. This mental health day, challenge yourself to speak to your friend, neighbor or colleague.
The best activity had to be the Pick ‘n’ Mix we held to promote conversation between employees. Everyone who wanted to take part, put their name into a hat. They then had to pick someone out of the hat and spend a break time with: a mix of icebreaker questions, a cuppa and some cake. If the conversation didn’t quite flow, we had a number of questions to ask, to help break the ice.
We were lucky that almost everyone picked someone who they never normally talk to, for their 10 min catch up… unfortunately we now can’t stop people from talking to each other! it’s truly been a great success and something we are going to continue.
Along with the Pick ‘N’ Mix, we’ve had information sessions and other activities promoting positive mental wellbeing. From Cherry Picking on our lunch breaks; to taking part in Charity fund raising events. It’s been a busy year all around at Cell Pack Solutions and we’re already looking forward to continuing in 2019!
After asking employees for their picks, we decided to support the charity Mind, in 2019. They do some great work offering support and breaking the stigma around Mental Health. We are looking forward to organising some great fund raising activities and taking part in other events. Hannah, our production operator ran the Great North Run for Mind and raised a fantastic £400, encouraging others to take part next year.