Hello and welcome to this week’s message. I’d like to talk about the simple but very powerful act of kindness and how the smallest gesture can make the biggest difference to patients, carers, families and colleagues. If we then ‘pay it forward’ we can spread this far and wide and create a culture naturally populated with those small acts of kindness and compassion that really do make for a happier working environment, patient experience and boosts health and wellbeing.
We know that January is one of the busiest and most challenging months for the NHS and experience at ASPH bears that out, so it’s even more important that we focus on caring for each other as well as for patients.
So this is a perfect opportunity to talk about kindness and what ASPH are doing to help support colleagues with their mental health and wellbeing during 2020 and beyond.
A movement that has particularly caught my eye at the moment around the Trust and the wider NHS is the #mugged campaign! The premise is that an anonymous colleague gives another colleague a mug filled with little treats and a message to say how they think they are doing a great job and want to make their week a bit brighter. Then once you have been mugged you ‘pay it forward’ by sending someone else a mug. I absolutely love this! Such a simple idea, bringing joy and an immediate uplift amongst the daily pressures.
I also wanted to highlight a really interesting national campaign - Action for happiness - that provides free happiness courses based on the teachings of the Dalai Lama.
As you know the health and well-being of Team ASPH has always been firmly on our agenda and improving support and facilities for colleagues is a priority. We have just launched the new health and well-being plan and to support this, the team are looking for Well-Being Ambassadors. They will promote positive mental health, share information on well-being initiatives and be part of a team of Ambassadors that will champion health and well-being throughout the Trust.
A very exciting development over this year and next will be the creation of two well-being hubs at both Ashford and St Peter’s. We’ve had lots of feedback from colleagues about what they’d like to see in these hubs. We are still shaping up plans, but anticipate they will include a gym, quiet space for relaxation, flexible social space, changing and kitchen facilities, sleep pods, bike storage and Amazon delivery locker.
There are so many exciting initiatives and activities out there that we can all get involved in.
With best wishes