16/09/2021 - Permalink

Shropshire leads the way with new innovative mental health project for business sector

Related topics: Health

An new initiative has been launched to support the emotional heath and wellbeing of people living and working in Shropshire.

Shropshire Council, in partnership with the local Samaritans branch in Shrewsbury, is reaching out to support workers and volunteers in the fitness, leisure and sport sector to be a part of the exciting project.

Recent survey results show that people taking part in sport frequently talk about their feelings, experiences, worries and concerns.

The local Samaritans are hosting two-hour workshops for workers and volunteers to come together with others from their sector to learn how to manage these difficult conversations and learn more about local services.

Rich Dunnill Partnership Lead for Samaritans of Shrewsbury said:

Listening is a powerful tool. Compassionate and skilled listening is what the Samaritans provide, often when people are in their darkest moment. We’re delighted to be part of this new initiative and to share our listening skills with great staff from a range of great Shropshire businesses.

We believe this project will help people to avoid reaching crisis point or feeling overwhelmed. All of us have the capacity to listen in a way that enables people to reach out and find support.

Love2Live is hosting the sessions as part of their focus on health and wellbeing.

Laura Wild, marketing and events manager, said:

At Love2 Live we believe in a holistic approach to health and mental wellbeing. We offer a range of services, including our boutique gym, outdoor boot camp area and natural cold water swimming pool. We are delighted to be contributing to this important project.

The initiative is also being backed by Councillor Dean Carroll, cabinet member for public health.

He said:

As we all adjust to living with COVID-19 and reflect upon the impact of the pandemic, Shropshire council recognises the need to support emotional health and mental wellbeing. In Shropshire we are committed to developing resilient communities and involving the business sector in this way is an innovative approach.

Rachel Robinson, Shropshire’s director of Public Health added:

This project is public health at its best, reaching out to engage, involve, support, and inform the whole population. The business sector has a vital role and key part to play in keeping Shropshire emotionally and mentally healthy. Physical and mental health are intrinsically linked, and we are pleased that this project will support and recognise those working and volunteering in the gym, leisure, and sport sector.

The idea was developed by Shropshire Council’s Alice Cruttwell who overheard a personal trainer talking to a recently bereaved client.

She said:

“In between doing press ups, the conversation was incredibly well and sensitively handled. In addition, my hairdresser told me how emotionally drained and tired she was listening to everyone’s troubles. I knew that public health needed to support those who were doing the listening.”

Plans are in place to offer the sessions to other sectors, such as hospitality and the construction sector. Anyone interested in taking part should contact micayla.beaumont@shropshire.gov.uk