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Mental health champions: National Inclusion Week blog

On day four of National Inclusion Week, our Learning & Development Manager Sharon Cooper writes about our RBH employee mental health champions...

RBH are in the process of recruiting and training Mental Health champions from across the society. These champions will offer support to colleagues who might need a little help, remind them to look after themselves and consider getting some help.

Did you know? In a recent Business in the Community survey, 86% of respondents (20,000+) said that fears about interfering or not knowing what to do had prevented them from approaching a colleague they were concerned about. Only 2% of respondents had said they discussed their mental health with HR.

In a separate survey conducted by Capita Employee Benefits, only 33% of respondents (3,000+) said they would feel comfortable talking to their employer if they were suffering from a mental health problem

In 2016 mental health was the most common reason for sickness absence both in RBH and nationally, and although it is no longer the top absence reason, it still has a significant impact on our colleagues.  Our Mental Health Champions are not expected to be therapists, but able to spot the signs of stress and changes in behaviour and help signpost colleagues to get help if they need it.

We are supporting our Champions by working with Rochdale and District MIND, RBH’s member charity, to provide two-day Mental Health First Aid training - which will equip them with the necessary tools and techniques to be as supportive as possible.

RBH asked colleagues to volunteer to be Mental Health Champions and we were over whelmed with the number of people who put themselves forward for the role.  I think this really highlights how supportive and inclusive RBH is!

Apprenticeship Opportunity

Our partners, Groundwork in Bolton, Bury, Oldham and Rochdale, are looking for two exceptional people to work for their ‘Green Team’ to implement land improvement projects on behalf of RBH, while working towards a Level 2 qualification in Work-based Horticulture and Landscaping.

This is a fantastic opportunity to develop hard and soft landscaping skills, study for a qualification, and work in a friendly and supportive environment, all whilst earning a real Living Wage!

Applications close on Friday 9th March. Visit the Groundwork BBOR website to find out more and to apply!

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