Kingston Council Mental Health and Wellbeing Training Programme for Care Workers

July 20, 2021

In order to safeguard the wellbeing of the care workforce, Kingston Council launched a wellbeing training programme, alongside a package of support, in September 2020.

In brief

  • Increased the number of mental health first aiders in the care workforce by 110 per cent.
  • 78 per cent of attendees found the mental health first aid course useful.
  • All the participants would recommend the programme to others.

Covid-19 has taken its toll on us all and we’re yet to know the full impact it’s had on our workforce, particularly those working on the frontline in the health and care sector. From the physical exhaustion of maintaining capacity when sickness levels were high to the emotional effects of managing own fears and anxieties whilst coping with mass bereavement and loss. The trauma our care workers have faced over the past year cannot be underestimated and their mental and physical health has never been more of a priority.

In order to safeguard the wellbeing of the care workforce, Kingston Council launched a wellbeing training programme, alongside a package of support, in September 2020. The aims of the programme were to raise mental health awareness and understanding amongst the workforce, build resilience and increase their ability to cope with day to day stressors. Through the programme, a network of wellbeing champions was created to provide peer support and deliver wellbeing workshops throughout their organisations and communities.

“The course was absolutely wonderful and I enjoyed my experience in the mental health for first hand. I would recommend everyone to have the course”Course participant

Our Healthy Ageing team were asked to evaluate the wellbeing programme that Kingston council provided for their care workers. You can read the results of the evaluation here.

The pilot programme has been a huge success and increased the number of mental health first aiders in the care workforce by 110 per cent. It’s worth noting, although stress levels were reported as higher post the course, this coincided with the second wave of Covid, lockdown and a very difficult winter. The programme may have made people more aware of the actual stress they were working under – which is a positive outcome as, once recognised, steps can be taken to address the issues.

After the programme participants felt that they understood how to look after their own wellbeing and spot signs of anxiety, stress and other related mental health conditions. The team, plan to continue rolling out this programme throughout 2021.

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By Rita Mogaiji

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