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NI’s Leading Homelessness Charity Announces Staff Health & Wellbeing Strategy

30 April 2019

With a focus on strengthening and skilling staff to better deliver support to vulnerable people, Simon Community NI have announced a health and wellbeing strategy aimed at addressing key themes highlighted from an internal survey conducted by the charity in late 2018.

Through a series of themed initiatives, the charity will respond to areas of Mental Health, Sleep and Weight Management by prioritising the themes raised by staff across Northern Ireland. Kick-starting the initiative, Simon Community recently delivered hints and tips folders to all temporary accommodation projects as well as launched a series of events including mood food roadshows, nutrition and sleep presentations, lunchtime walking clubs and body composition workshops.

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Through a series of themed initiatives, the charity will respond to areas of Mental Health, Sleep and Weight Management by prioritising the themes raised by staff across Northern Ireland. Kick-starting the initiative, Simon Community recently delivered hints and tips folders to all temporary accommodation projects as well as launched a series of events including mood food roadshows, nutrition and sleep presentations, lunchtime walking clubs and body composition workshops.

Oonagh Cullen, Learning & Development Manager at Simon Community NI commented:

Often, staff at Simon Community are so focused on the wellbeing of clients that they can forget to care for themselves. This new strategy has been designed in response to those key areas highlighted by employees and will be an opportunity for individuals to take stock of their own health and wellbeing and work with Simon Community to better it.

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It is early days but from visits to projects, people are interested in learning more and seeing how it fits in to their work and home lives. The creation of Health & Wellbeing Champions means that representatives from across the charity are tasked with keeping the strategy a living document that responds to needs and wants.

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An internal competition, which ran throughout the month of April, tasked projects with showcasing what health & wellbeing meant to them. 

Cliftonville Avenue project, based in North Belfast, were randomly selected by the Health & Wellbeing Champions as the winners receiving stress busting parcels kindly donated by LUSH Belfast City Centre in recognition of the tireless work of the charity’s staff. 

Talking about their project’s initiatives, Mary Fullerton from Simon Community Cliftonville Avenue commented:

With the Cavehill and Waterworks on our doorstop, staff at Cliftonville Avenue are in a lucky position when it comes to getting out and active. Our team try and get a walk in the waterworks most mornings followed by a chamomile tea which has proven benefits in areas of sleep, stress and digestion. When the weather is good, we aim to get a Cavehill climb incorporated into our weekly routine.

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Staff Health and Wellbeing Activity