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Mental Health Awareness Week: Meet our new MH First Aiders!

To celebrate Mental Health Awareness Week 2021, we’re sharing the news that we will soon have 3 trained Mental Health First Aiders! Meet the two latest additions, Emma Lane, HR and Business Executive and Dave Pinches, Top Banana’s Art Director, who are joining our existing MHFA, Venue Sourcing Manager Helen Davis.

Mental Health has always been high on our agenda, and back in 2019, we bought on our first Mental Health First aider, Helen

“It has been a very challenging year for all of us and when we think about it, there isn’t really a single person in the country who hasn’t gone through a substantial lifestyle change, that this time last year they could never have anticipated. Bringing on additional Mental Health First Aiders is incredible, as it gives our employees a wider range of personalities to pick from and re-enforces our dedication to keeping Mental Health high on the companies’ priority list. I’m so pleased that I trained when I did, and it’s been so rewarding helping my peers through an incredibly tough 12 months. Mental Health isn’t just a single moment in time, it carries on after Mental Health Awareness week and Top Banana are always looking at initiatives that support employees’ long term – and our new and growing First Aid team is a testament to just that!”.

Top Banana Managing Director Jemma also commented…

Jemma Peers

“We really wanted to up our ratio of Mental Health First Aiders to employees, as although all Top Banana Line Managers are trained in Mental Health, we know that sometimes people find it easer to talk to someone outside of their team, who feel more separated from their day to day lives. The mix of departments and genders I think gives our business a really strong range of personalities for people to go and talk to, and it also gives the Mental Health First Aiders themselves the support of a team and someone for them to talk to if they’re feeling overwhelmed”.

As part of the Mental Health Foundation’s 2021 campaign around ‘Nature’, our employees have an afternoon off this week to get back into the wild and find some time for themselves. We’ll be sending out seed packs for those who want to get green-fingered and eye spy nature edition books for those who want to find some fun in their evening walks! All so we can help understand that in order to benefit our own mental health, we must become aware of how nature helps us too. 

We know that Mental Health Awareness week can be a difficult time if you’re someone who is struggling, but if things are getting too much don’t be afraid to ask for help – several organisations are available, which offer professional help and are totally separate from your day-to-day life. A list of these is below.

  • Samaritans: 116 123 (24/7 freephone)
  • Stress Maters: www.stressmatters.org.uk
  • Mind Infoline: 0300 123 3393 (Mon-Fri 9am – 6pm)
  • Anxiety UK: Charity providing support if you have been diagnosed with an anxiety condition. 03444 775 774 (Mon-Fri 9.30am – 5.30pm)
  • Men’s Health Forum: 24/7 stress support for men by text, chat and email www.menshealthforum.org.uk
  • Rethink Mental Illness: Support and advice for people living with mental illness. 0300 5000 927 (Mon-Fri 9.30am – 4pm)

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