NELFT’s inaugural Staff Health and Wellbeing week proved to be a great success last week. The week’s proceedings took place from Monday 10 to Friday 14 July and saw more than 60 events being organised for staff across the NELFT localities.
The events varied from walking sessions, table tennis and a charity football match to yoga, massages and mindfulness sessions. Activities were planned to help staff take care of both their physical and mental health as well as their overall wellbeing.
As well as events in the localities, a NELFT-wide event was held at Trust headquarters at CEME. This event included health information stalls, batak board, table tennis, MuayThai and boot camp sessions as well as a problem solving booth, Tai Chi and relaxation sessions. The day was a great success, with over 100 staff coming along and taking part in various activities.
Chief executive, John Brouder; executive director of finance Barry Jenkins and NELFT chair, Joe Fielder came along and played some table tennis, they also walked around talking to staff at the health information stalls. Barry said: “I really enjoyed spending time at the staff health and wellbeing week event at CEME, it was refreshing to be able to get active during the day whilst playing some table tennis with my PA, this also served as a great team bonding activity too. It is so important that our staff take care of their own health and wellbeing, they are dedicated to our patients and service users, providing the best care possible, and we want them to take care of their own health equally as well. I enjoyed talking to some of our frontline staff at the event and picked up some great health tips for myself.”
John Brouder met our new health and wellbeing co-ordinators, pictured above, at the CEME event; these are new roles within the Community Health and Social Care Service in Barking and Dagenham. Health and wellbeing co-ordinators offer non clinical support to patients who, for example, may have long term conditions, high risk of hospital admissions or high numbers of GP visits, or may be frail and/socially isolated. Also, offering support to patients who may want to make lifestyle changes. Look out for a future roundup article on this new service in the near future.
In Barking, staff at Thames View Health Centre came together on the Thursday to hold a bake sale for the general public and staff. The teams created a selection of cakes and snacks, including healthy options and sold them for charity. On the day, the teams managed to make £176, which will be donated to the Youth Offending Service.
Staff from the acute rehabilitation directorate (ARD) took part in activities including a cake and chat morning which was aimed at helping staff move away from their desk/ward and have a moment to relax, Zumba sessions which staff said left them feeling happier and more energised, table tennis (pictured below) and a lunchtime walk in the park. Staff at the Brookside adolescent inpatient unit in Goodmayes also hosted a BBQ and sports day.
Health visitors at South Hornchurch health centre marked staff health and wellbeing week, as well as the one year anniversary of their teams merging, by getting together with their families at one staff members home. Each person brought a dish to enjoy whilst all getting to know each other. A bouncy castle was hired and both adults and children alike got their exercise bouncing away.
Colette Avery, health visitor and team leader said: “It was good to find out more about the people we work with as people, as well as colleagues, away from KPI’s, training and daily pressures. We highly recommend to other teams and look forward to events in the future. We are most grateful to Joanna Hunt for giving up her house and garden for the afternoon.”
Staff on ward 1 at Grays Court in Dagenham participated in events to mark staff health and wellbeing week and the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy's Work out at Work initiative. Over two weeks staff attended seated exercise groups with patients, pilates/back care sessions and a lunch time walk around the park, pictured below. All staff felt that the sessions were of great benefit and would like it to continue on a regular basis to support healthy living and reduce stress.
Staff from the Marks Gate health visiting team used lunchtime as an opportunity to get outside and take a walk, pictured below.
Waltham Forest community recovery team held a table tennis tournament in the porta cabin on the Thorpe Coombe Site. The first round, held on Monday, drew in 20 competitors from the CRT, early intervention in psychosis (EIP) and child and adolescent mental health (CAMHS) services. The second round on Tuesday saw those competitors brought down to the final four and then semi-finals and finals saw mental health nurse and CCO, Kofi Agyemang (pictured below left), crowned the winner. The tournament drew in a good crowd of spectators as well as those competing and staff are now aiming to generate funding for a foldable table tennis table and a fixed space to play as they feel it is a low cost way of staying active at work and also accessible to many. Other activities in Waltham Forest included Zumba and exercise classes at the local YMCA.
Table tennis was also a great hit in Basildon at Phoenix House where 16 players took part in a tournament including ICD, Brid Johnson (pictured below). The tournament was well attended, hotly contested and proved a very efficient way of getting staff away from desks for a small amount of physical activity and much laughter ensued. The winner was Sam Chilvers from the temporary staffing team.
All staff attending said that they want to do this again and all of the Essex teams will be made aware that the equipment is available on a permanent basis to borrow from the Phoenix House HR office.
Staff in Havering also enjoyed various events including mindfulness, stress workshops, table tennis, Havering Happy feet and finishing the week off with a Havering health and wellbeing event on Friday 14 July.
The wellbeing event on Friday ended the week very well with around 50 staff and senior managers getting involved in various activities. Not only did the staff have an opportunity to keep-fit by burning calories, taking part in a Bollywood dance routine, they were also treated to having mendhi (henna) applied to their hands and feet by talented Havering HR staff (pictured below). Staff were reminded of the importance of taking time out of their busy day to de-stress and to be mindful of their own health and wellbeing.
Havering CAMHS lead, Diana Daniel-Dawson, had approached Tesco’s in Rainham, who kindly donated a generous selection of fruit which was enjoyed by everyone at Church Road as can be seen in the picture above.