Businesses looking to improve employee mental health

February 27, 2020 BY

A NEW initiative recently launched in the Geelong region is aiming to improve workplace mental health.

The Give Where You Live Foundation (GWYL) has created the Give Where You Live Learning Network as part of WorkSafe’s WorkWell Program.

G21 Regional Opportunities for Work (GROW) engagement officer Liz Everist said Give Where You Live applied to become one of the WorkWell program’s Learning Network chairs through their pre-existing connections.

“Because we already have the GROW network, we suggested that we would like to target small/medium businesses who have the least capacity, least resources, least time and usually don’t have HR (human resources) staff like the big organisations do. They’re the ones that need the most help in terms of getting their businesses to be mentally safe and healthy environments for their staff.”

The network connects participating businesses to mental health experts also partnered with GWYL. It then collaborates with the businesses to co-design tools and strategies with them to help improve workplace mental health.

Ms Everist said the experts looked to be flexible with how they aided businesses.

“The first piece we will be doing with these businesses is really a bit around the identification of what their real needs and problems are, so we don’t go in with any assumptions.

“The focus of the solutions is that they are affordable and accessible and easy, so that a small business that is time poor or resource poor can implement it.

“We’re not doing to them; we’re doing it for them.”

Ms Everist said all the businesses she contacted embraced the opportunity to be part of the program.

“The whole focus of GROW is how can we help businesses employ people that have barriers to employment.

“Having already had conversations with businesses about that I knew the ones that were really trying, and I just reached out to them and I did not get one rejection.

“It’s amazing to have such great, engaged businesses in this region who really want to do something for their own staff.”

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