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Mental Health Awareness Week 2021

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This week marks the 21st national Mental Health Awareness Week, set up by the Mental Health Foundation to create an opportunity for the UK to focus on achieving and understanding good mental health.

In the spirit of this, we wanted to share our experience of corporate wellbeing and the importance of ensuring your employees have everything they need to ensure good mental health.

For almost everyone, 2020 was an incredibly stressful year due to the pandemic. But as a leading supplier of PPE to the NHS, at Full Support Healthcare we faced some unique challenges.

With demand for PPE at an all time high, everyone in the company began to find themselves working long hours – through evenings, nights and weekends – to ensure we were doing all that we could to help in the battle against COVID-19.

When times get tough, we often neglect to take proper care of ourselves and our mental wellness.

But concerned about the wellbeing of the company’s employees, our CEO Sarah Stoute felt that it was important to put in place a wellbeing programme at the company, to help combat the intensified workload and any personal stressors employees may have.

Led by Psychotherapist and Wellbeing Consultant Carly Turner from A Big Hug, a wellness programme was developed and put in place at Full Support Healthcare.

Each employee was offered the opportunity to take part in a one-to-one session with Carly to discuss their overall wellbeing and how they’re coping with working from home and lockdown.

During this session, Carly focused on the four pillars of wellbeing: life, mind, social and body, asking questions surrounding work/life balance, personal relationships and physical wellbeing.

If required, the employee was then offered the chance to meet with Carly again for six further sessions of counselling/coaching for further support, to provide them with the tools to cope during this exceptionally stressful time.

Fitting with this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week theme of “nature”, Carly often found that practices as simple as going for a walk at lunchtime or taking a business call whilst sat in the garden, proved to be effective ways to help employees improve their mental and physical health – two things that are heavily connected.

In fact, The Mental Health Foundation found that 45% of people reported that being in green spaces had been vital for their mental health during lockdown, showing that even small contacts with nature can help to ease feelings of isolation.

In regards to the wellbeing programme, Sarah Stoute said: “As the pandemic developed, the demand for our products and services were higher than ever before, dramatically increasing the workload of our employees.

Carly has been a brilliant support, ensuring that each and every employee is equipped to take better care of their mental and physical health.

Due to the success of the Wellness Programme at Full Support Healthcare, the programme is being extended across the Full Support Group of companies, Design Reality and Keysoe International.

For more information, please visit the Mental Health Foundation’s website to find out more about Mental Health Awareness Week and to access their wellbeing resources: www.mentalhealth.org.uk

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