Leading charity Dorset Mind has recognised that people in Dorset are now experiencing the most difficult challenges to their mental health. Requests for help have risen yet again during this third lockdown period and people need help more than ever. Without an end in sight to workplace disruption, it is critical that support is available to help people build resilience and manage stress.
The training team at Dorset Mind have identified that workers and employers, in particular, trying to work from home, changing the way they operate whilst, at the same time, home schooling children or living on reduced incomes are experiencing increased stress, anxiety, burnout and depression.
So the charity has responded by unveiling its extended range of training courses and presentations. This is in direct response to the worsening mental health issues. It’s an attempt to provide people with the education, support and information that they need to thrive – not just survive.
The challenge of lockdown 3
Alexis Stevens, Training Manager at Dorset Mind says, “It comes as no surprise – lockdown number three is challenging us mentally, physically and emotionally. We’ve experienced almost a year of restrictions – and the dark winter months and seemingly endless monotony of life without socially connecting with friends, family and colleagues has been extremely difficult to endure for everyone, and in particular those trying to juggle jobs, childcare and other caring responsibilities”.
The Office for National Statistics’ latest survey ‘Coronavirus and the social impacts on Britain (5 Feb 2021)’ reports that depression in adults has doubled since pre-pandemic levels – and anxiety is the highest it’s been since April 2020. Business uncertainty and the financial impact of redundancies have also added extra strain. This is on top of the pressure of working from home and managing home schooling.
Dorset Mind noticed these issues and others, such as grief, loneliness and isolation, contributing to a considerable increase in demand for support services – referrals for some services have risen by 80%.
These findings prompted the Training Team at Dorset Mind to expand their offer for organisations and individuals alike. The team added ‘Resilience,’ ‘Grief, Loss and Big Change’ and ‘Understanding Suicide’ sessions to their range of established training programmes. These include ‘Mental Health Awareness,’ ‘Beating Stress, Anxiety and Burnout’ and ‘Courageous Conversations for Managers.’
A one-hour talk ‘Your Mental Health Matters,’ has already received glowing feedback from Aster Group, Ceuta Group and Osprey Europe. Importantly, it opened some frank and honest conversation about employee wellbeing within these companies – which have continued.
Mental Health First Aid education
The charity is delighted to announce they are now approved Mental Health First Aid England Instructor Members. As such, they have added online adult Mental Health First Aid courses to complement their portfolio of training. And to recognise the selfless efforts of keyworkers and teachers, the charity is offering an introductory discount of 20% for their Mental Health First Aid training courses.
Marianne Storey, CEO says, “As a local Mind, we are able to react to the needs of our communities. We’ve expanded our bespoke training package to help alleviate the impact of what’s happening during the pandemic. These new additions add substance to our already established packages for mental health awareness. They help people to recognize early signs and triggers of mental ill health. They also provide practical strategies to prevent stress and burnout, and deal with the enormity of change. This can be completely overwhelming.
Our training courses give delegates an in-depth understanding of mental health. The group work and lived experience of our trainers adds genuine context to the course. We’re pleased to offer keyworkers and teachers 20% discount to train with our expert Instructors. We recognise they’re under huge stresses themselves – and we can train them to support their co-workers.”
Sense of community
Dr Andy Mayers, Dorset Mind Patron and Principal Academic at Bournemouth University adds, “The negative impact of Covid-19 on mental health continues to cause concern, which is why I am proud of the way that Dorset Mind has responded by adapting support services.
Despite all of the poorer effects of Covid, one positive outcome I have seen from this pandemic is the re-emergence of a sense of community. People are pulling together in a way seldom seen before. Perhaps more than ever, this is a time where we should be looking out for each other. I truly believe that these new courses are an opportunity for local organisations to invest in their community and help rebuild mental health at the same time.“
If you want to take advantage of this training, please email our Instructor Beth at firstname.lastname@example.org. MHFA Courses start on 8th March 2021. Alternatively, find out more about the training we offer here.