Here at Dowds Group, our employees are at the core of everything we do and so we make it our main concern to care and look after their physical and mental well-being. Awareness of Mental Health has definitely elevated over the past few years, however it is still very much something that we need to keep at the forefront of our lives, not only for ourselves but for those around us.
With significant company expansion, especially over the last 3-4 years and with an ever increasing awareness within the construction industry that the many stresses of a high pressure, male dominated environment was having its toll on the mental health and well-being of many key personnel, it became an imperative need to promote Mental Health Awareness within Dowds group. With this in mind, we embarked on a Health Matters Initiative with background plans and work starting in early 2017. This initiative is spread throughout all the offices and sites, both in Northern Ireland and London. All employees have access to our ‘Heads Together’ booklet which is a mental health support services guide as well as the connections to our four trained Mental Health First Aiders with another two being trained in June of this year.
Colin Walker (pictured above) is our most recent employee trained as a Mental Health First Aider. He is our Health & Safety Manager and is based in the Ballymoney office, with frequent trips carried out to the different sites both in Northern Ireland and London.
Dowds Group have a key working partnership with Aware NI, a leading support organisation, specialising in Mental Health and Well-Being, who were also one of our chosen charities from our ‘Forty For 40’ campaign last year. Last week was Mental Health Awareness Week and we were informed about the challenges that Aware NI were setting to help improve people mental health and their awareness by running their #DoOneThing campaign. Our employees thoroughly enjoyed taking part in the different challenges every day and even managed to send us through a few of their snap shots.
There was five different challenges across the week including; Move More, Watch What You Eat, Keep In Touch, Take Time For You, Do Something Nice. Dowds group made a great effort throughout the week and it was noted that more people were talking about the challenges everyday as well as mental health.
We received feedback from our employees, both on site and in office about the push that Dowds Group are putting on Mental Health Awareness. A number of our staff have had experience of poor Mental Health and Well-being and the impact that has on their work and home life. We want to be able to provide our employees with the support that they deserve, as well as trying to break the stigma surrounding Mental Health.