Colleagues at Go North East, the region’s largest bus company, will be marking Time to Talk Day today, Thursday 4th February.
This national initiative aims to spark conversations about mental health, with the aim of breaking down the stigma, isolation and shame that often affects people suffering with poor mental health.
To mark the day, Champions from the company’s One Team GNE diversity and team culture improvement initiative have put together a short video of colleagues sharing who they talk to when they’re struggling.
Go North East team members are also sharing information on who colleagues can talk to, including details of the company’s Employee Assistance Programme, which offers free telephone and online counselling for Go North East colleagues.
It is hoped that these activities will encourage more of these little conversations between people, not only on Time to Talk Day, but beyond.
Today, Go North East has also announced its new Mental Health Ambassadors programme, that will see colleagues at all depots trained to act as points-of-contact for anyone who needs someone to talk to.
These Ambassadors will be there to listen to colleagues and signpost to other people or organisations who can offer further help, if needed.
Martijn Gilbert, managing director, at Go North East, said: ‘Marking Time to Talk Day is a really important part of our company’s efforts to get more of our workforce talking about mental health.
‘This is part of ongoing work to help break down the stigma around mental health in our workplace.
‘I’m also really pleased to launch our Mental Health Ambassadors programme today. Over the coming months, we’ll be looking for volunteers to take on these important roles, who will be given training and plenty of support.
‘These Ambassadors will be there for colleagues to go to if they want to let off some steam, or just want to know where they can go for help with any problems they’re facing.’
If you’re experiencing mental health problems or need urgent support, there are lots of places you can go to for help, including the Time to Change website.