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PD Ports launches Wellbeing Week

[ November 5, 2020   //   ]

PD Ports will launch a week of initiatives to improve the wellbeing of its people on 9 November. This will include pausing operations for a short period to encourage conversation, to raise awareness of mental health issues and reduce the stigma that stops so many people from seeking help as the country enters a second period of lockdown.

As one of the largest employers in the Tees Valley, PD Ports is placing a renewed focus on the signs, symptoms and solutions to mental health issues with a dedicated mental health awareness week.

It has already trained over 40 employees to become Mental Health First Aiders, on hand to give confidential advice to colleagues when required.

Chief executive Frans Calje, said that 2020 “has been a hugely challenging year with the COVID19 crisis still affecting how we live, work, socialise and go about our daily routines. Statistics show that one in every four people experience some form of mental health issues and, as the pandemic continues, we felt that now was the time to really elevate the conversation to the next level. We hope that by dedicating a week to activities and initiatives to raise awareness of mental health, we will open up the conversation amongst our people, challenge the stigma and encourage people to seek help if they feel they need it.”

Deputy People Officer at North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust, Gary Wright, added: “This year, more than ever, the importance of managing our own colleagues’ mental health and well-being has been of the utmost importance. As a frontline service, we have been impacted dramatically by the ongoing world health pandemic. The move by PD Ports to invest in their own colleagues is to be celebrated. We are very fortunate across the Tees Valley to see forward-thinking employers make moves to break down barriers and start conversations around mental health.”

Earlier in the year, as lockdown started to take hold, PD Ports launched a new employee communication tool in the form of a mobile application, Strive to connect people across all 13 sites nationwide. It includes an ‘Ask Frans’ section which grants direct confidential access to the chief executive.

Frans Calje will also be featuring on the next Tees Business Leaders Panel, to discuss how businesses can support their people and their mental health as the COVID19 pandemic continues. Tune in to the Tees Business Facebook page at 2pm on Tuesday 10 November to watch.