Mental Health Awareness Week 2021
Mental Health Awareness
“There is something to be wondered at in all of Nature” – Aristotle
Here at Hanham Secure Health, we were proud to support and promote Mental Health Awareness Week 2021 during the week 10th-16th May. We shared a range of updates, information and resources with our employees, and looked at how we could use the theme of the week – nature – to promote mental wellbeing within our patient group. We hope that you also have found the time to get outside and get connected with the nature around you!
Mark Rowland Chief Executive of the Mental Health Foundation said:
“Mental Health Awareness Week has grown to be one of the biggest awareness weeks in the UK. This year the theme is on nature and its central role for our mental health. Since the beginning of the pandemic, millions of us turned to nature to help us get through lockdowns and our research shows that good mental health depends on us being able to connect with nature in some way and its power in both prevention of and recovery from poor mental health. During the week, we want to hear millions of people’s stories about how the natural world has supported their mental health. We also want to highlight the huge disparities between who is and who isn’t able to access nature. We want the week to explore how everyone across the UK can connect with nature and experience the mental health benefits wherever they live.”
Nature in Secure Environments
During Mental Health Awareness week, we learned about how important it is to be able to connect with nature and the impact on those of us who have limited access to it (i.e. no garden or outdoor space). But what about our patients held within a secure establishment?
We asked the teams at each of our secure sites to find out and provide details of the outdoor spaces and the opportunities to connect with nature that our patients have. Whilst many sites offer different horticultural and outdoor activities, have allotments, some animals and lovely green spaces, other sites have little or no real access to nature.
This tells us that we need to take extra steps to ensure the mental wellbeing of our patients is supported and cared for through other means, and to work with our secure environment colleagues to increase the opportunity for patients to connect with nature.
A huge thank you to those HSH employees who participated in our Mental Health Awareness Week Competition by submitting photos of their connection with nature.
We received some beautiful images, and our winners were:
1st Place – Becky, Business & Project Support Officer
2nd Place – Ellie, Advanced Clinical Practitioner
3rd Place – Cimone, Healthcare Assistant
After a week of focusing our thoughts on our own mental wellbeing, we are invited staff to once again complete a mental wellbeing survey to help us understand how they are feeling.
The survey results were compared to the results from earlier in the year and, whilst the results show that the impact of the last year is still affecting energy levels, we were really pleased to see that we are:
Feeling more useful
Feeling more optimistic about the future
More interested in other people
Dealing with problems well on a more regular basis
Feeling better about ourselves
Feeling closer to other people
Feeling confident more often
Feeling loved more often
Feeling cheerful more often
Mental health issues are not something that only matter or affect us one week a year. It can affect any of us at any time. Our employees have access to optional learning modules on our eLearning platform, including Positive Mental Health at Work and Stress at Work.
We are always sharing further resources that our employees may find useful if and when they need them, such as: