Managing the mental health and stress of staff in small charities

Managing the mental health and stress of staff in small charities is crucial for maintaining a positive and productive work environment.

In the workplace, employers should encourage open and honest communication between staff members and management to create a supportive and non-judgmental atmosphere where employees feel comfortable discussing their mental health concerns.

By providing training and education on mental health awareness, stress management techniques, and self-care practices, staff can recognise their own needs and develop healthy coping strategies.

During the height of COVID-19 in 2020, companies adapted to remote working due to the lockdown, which has still filtered into 2023. Offering flexible, hybrid work arrangements can help reduce stress by allowing staff to better balance their work and personal lives.

Encourage employees to take regular breaks and use their annual leave allowance. Promote the importance of rest and relaxation to prevent burnout and support their overall wellbeing.

Working remotely generally allows for a quieter, more subdued atmosphere, reducing the likelihood of sensory overload and the associated feelings of stress and anxiety.

Free Courses in England often hold classes on Mental Health First Aid. Encourage supervisors to sit classes, workshops and webinars for up to date methods. Ask them to maintain regular check-ins with their team members to provide support, guidance, and resources as needed.

So staff are adept at listening to their mind and body in stressful times, consider offering group mindfulness classes in the workplace.

By practicing mindfulness, individuals aim to develop greater self-awareness and an ability to respond to their experiences calmly and with clarity.

Speak with View Point a local charity that often conducts Mindfulness sessions for individuals.

If feasible, consider implementing an Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) or similar support system. EAPs provide confidential counselling services and resources for employees dealing with personal or work-related challenges.

It’s important to have an emphasis on work-life balance by setting realistic expectations and boundaries. Encourage employees to disconnect from work during non-working hours and prioritise self-care activities.

Providing a sense of community among peer is equally important and should be supported through team-building activities and regular social events. Positive relationships and a strong support network can help alleviate stress and promote mental wellbeing.

Celebrate individual and team accomplishments to boost morale and create a positive work environment. Recognising and appreciating staff’s efforts can contribute to their sense of fulfilment and reduce stress.

Always provide information and resources about mental health services, helplines, and community organisations that can offer additional support to staff members when they need it.

Mind in Mid Herts has a wealth of resources available and regularly posts information out to subscribers.

Remember, everyone’s experiences and needs are unique, so it’s essential to create an environment that values and supports the mental health and wellbeing of your staff. Regularly revisit the effectiveness of your strategies, adapt to change and be open to feedback to continually improve your approach.

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