Before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, Step Change in Safety had announced plans to increase the frequency of its popular Mental Health Champions course, which had proven to be very popular throughout 2019. We did so as we recognised that more must be done to provide support resources, at the workplace, for those who may be suffering from poor mental health and wellbeing.
Having completed the first of these scheduled events in February we, unfortunately, had to postpone the remainder due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
We genuinely believe that due to the pandemic, down-manning, and its economic impact the need for such courses has never been more important. Undeterred, by COVID-19, we are now pilot testing an alternative, online version, of a similar course which we are looking to have up and running in June.
In the meantime, we want to promote Mental Health Awareness Week, by highlighting this year’s chosen theme of practicing an act of kindness, which is described as showing concern and consideration for others.
At Step Change in Safety we recognise that your mental health and wellbeing is integral to working safely and that your mental wellbeing can change at any time. With that in mind we encourage you to join us in showing acts of kindness motivated by a genuine desire to make a positive difference. Kindness and our mental health are deeply connected. Kindness is an antidote to isolation and creates a sense of belonging. It helps reduce stress, brings a fresh perspective, and deepens friendships.
The power and potential of kindness helps protect our mental health and is central to us coping with and recovering from the coronavirus pandemic - with the psychological and social impacts likely to outlast the physical symptoms of the virus.
Kindness strengthens relationships, helps develop a sense of community and solidarity. We have a once in a generation opportunity not only during but also following this pandemic for a reset and re-think about what kind of society we want to emerge from this crisis.
Applied kindness could have a transformative impact on our worksites, communities, and families. We must seize this time to shape a society that tips the balance in favour of good mental health, for all of us, but especially for those who are most vulnerable.
During Mental Health Awareness Week, we encourage you to consider:
- Reflecting on an act of kindness that made you feel safe
- How you could be kind to someone at your worksite to help make their day safer
- Share your ideas on how you think we could build a stronger safe community that would support our mental health & wellbeing.