Scottish charity, Carolina House Trust, commits to supporting staff wellbeing with a strategy linked to national initiatives. Actions to be taken include agreeing to individual Wellness Action Plans, naming Wellbeing Champions and partnering with a corporate wellbeing partner, We Are Wellbeing.
Head of Support Services, Joy Anderson, says, “We are in the early stages of implementing our Wellbeing Strategy. We started this initiative before the COVID pandemic but the last year has really brought home to us how crucial the support we provide to our staff team is. To maintain fostering, continuing care and residential care services for vulnerable children and young people, we must first ensure our staff are healthy and supported. The steps we have already taken have provided a specific policy for mental health, a framework for staff to have support in planning their wellbeing and upskilling staff in supporting their colleagues.”
The Wellbeing Strategy was agreed at a Board Meeting in August 2020 following considerable research and development by Charlene Bowman, People and Development Officer. It aims to build on the good practice already in place – regular supervision, employee assistance programme, Cycle to Work scheme and employee benefits and discounts – and embed wellbeing as a priority across all plans and policies making effective and easy to access support available to everyone.
Plans include appointing staff Wellbeing Champions who will embed wellbeing into organisational culture and be trained to spot the signs that staff are struggling and offer sign-posting support and advice. We Are Wellbeing are CHT’s Wellbeing Partner and have already provided assistance with a staff survey and training for our first Wellbeing Champion.
CHT has also designed Wellness Action Plans to aid conversation between staff and their line manager about what is helpful for maintaining their wellbeing and steps they can take. The Social Committee is also tasked to consider health and wellbeing in activities to support physical health.
CHT aspire to gain Healthy Working Lives accreditation and have signed up to Mind’s Mental Health at Work Commitment. The Commitment, and the standards which underpin it, are a roadmap to achieving better mental health outcomes for staff. It’s a set of actions that CHT will be following to improve and support the mental health of our people.