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Mental health support for IT employees nominated for award

07 Feb 2019

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An innovative programme of support for employees experiencing mental health challenges at work scooped a Workplace Mental Health Award nomination at the Thames Valley Business Magazine Awards.

The employee programme at Westcoast Ltd, a major EU wide distributor of leading IT brands, is part of a wider health and wellbeing support package delivered with support from Remploy, the UK’s leading disability, skills and employment specialist.

Liz Mylum, HR Manager for Westcoast Ltd, said: “We have a diverse workforce of more than 1,200 people working across the group at sites across the UK and our commitment to our employees and their wellbeing has always been at the core, so we’re delighted to be acknowledged in this award category. Working with Remploy has enabled us to implement a sustainable and accessible Mental Health and Wellbeing programme, offering a holistic package of support to employees at every level of the business. ”

The service is provided by Remploy as part of the Access to Work Mental Health Support Service, funded by the Department for Work and Pensions. It offers bespoke personal support for any employee struggling with their mental health to help them develop a plan to stay in, or return to work, as well as coping strategies or reasonable adjustments to help them overcome any barriers they may face.

Remploy also provided workshops and mentoring for managers to help them understand how to support their line reports with their mental health, and provided Mental Health First Aid Training across the business, to signpost those in need and champion activities promoting mental health in the workplace.

Liz added: “The team of trained Mental Health First Aiders is represented across all seniority levels and is representative of diversity, to make this group inclusive and encourage all employees to reach out to someone they can relate to.” 

Westcoast are encouraging dialogue by introducing ‘have a chat’ coffee vouchers, provided by the business to encourage people to talk and have a coffee.

Liz added: “Being able to talk about mental health is so important and we want to encourage colleagues to feel comfortable and confident approaching their peers for support if needed, away from their desks, opening conversation and enabling discussion.

“This programme has been developed in line with our core value #Brave and marks a cultural shift in breaking down the barriers faced by those suffering with mental health conditions at work.”

For more information about the Access to Work Mental Health Support Service, or working in partnership with Remploy, please contact Chris Kingsbury on 0776 636 4155. 

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