Mental Health Awareness Week (15 - 21 May), run by the Mental Health Foundation, is a yearly event that brings the UK together to focus on achieving good mental health. It aims to address the stigma attached to talking about your feelings and helps people and organisations to prioritise mental well-being. IJYI is a huge advocate of Mental Health Awareness Week and we will be using this opportunity to speak openly about mental health while showcasing the strides we've made in cultivating a positive and flexible work environment.
This Year's Theme: Anxiety
For this year's Mental Health Awareness Week, the focus is on anxiety, an important mental health concern that affects individuals across all walks of life. A recent survey the Mental Health Foundation carried out found that a quarter of adults said they felt so anxious that it stopped them from doing things they wanted to do. Anxiety can manifest in various forms, including generalised anxiety disorder, social anxiety, and panic disorder. This can be due to starting a new job, the stress of workloads, or personal matters that start to affect a person's work life. Recognising the impact anxiety has on individuals, businesses have a crucial role to play in supporting their employees' mental well-being.
IJYI's Commitment to Mental Well-Being
We recognise that a healthy and supportive work environment is essential for individuals to flourish both personally and professionally. Our company's approach to supporting mental health ensures that our employees feel heard, supported, and empowered to achieve the things they want within their roles. By prioritising mental health, we hope to set an example for other organisations to follow, demonstrating that a positive work environment and mental well-being are essential ingredients for long-term success.
Here are some of the commitments IJYI has made to prioritise mental well-being:
- Mental Health Resources and Support - We understand the importance of providing access to mental health resources to our employees. That's why we've got a comprehensive employee assistance program through Western Provident Association (WPA) that provides our staff members with a well-being helpline, confidential counseling and CBT services, and life skills support. These resources are readily available to our employees, encouraging them to seek help and support whenever needed.
- Well-being initiatives - Our company organises regular team-building activities to support charities that focus on mental health. One campaign that we're currently supporting is our Chief Financial Officer, Kevin Ward's fundraiser for Motor Neurone Disease Association (MNDA). He's taking part in the Rob Burrow Leeds Marathon and has already raised an amazing £730 for MNDA. We are supporting him by organising an internal team lunch where our employees are bringing in baked/ bought treats and donating money to his JustGiving page.
- Flexible Work Arrangements - We recognise that flexibility in work arrangements plays a significant role in promoting mental well-being. Our company offers flexible working hours and remote work options, allowing employees to manage their schedules in a way that best suits their individual needs. This flexibility helps to reduce stress, accommodate personal commitments, and create a healthy work-life balance.
- Training and Education - Being able to learn new things usually contributes to better mental health. That's why we have a training budget for every employee, which gives them the opportunity to upskill, complete a course, or undertake a new qualification. It's essential that we give back to our employees and show them that they're appreciated, as this can build up morale in the workplace.
- Supportive Leadership - Our leadership team actively encourages open dialogue, provides support to employees, and ensures that mental health is a priority within the company's values and practices. Every week we send an Officevibe survey to our employees which asks them five questions about how they're feeling at work. From this, we have a meeting once a month to go through the feedback and address any issues that may have arisen.
Join IJYI in Creating a Culture That Prioritises Mental Health
Mental Health Awareness Week provides an important opportunity for organisations to reflect on their commitment to mental well-being. Our dedication to promoting mental health wellness, not just during this week but throughout the year, provides insights into how you can implement best practices that focus on your employees' well-being.
Final Words from Our CEO, Kevin Linsell:
“By fostering a culture that values and supports mental health, we unlock the full potential of our team members, paving the way for creativity, productivity, and long-term success. At IJYI we are breaking the stigma surrounding mental health, initiating open conversations, and providing the necessary resources and support to ensure that every individual feels seen and heard.”