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Time to Change

13 October 2020

Time to Change: Notts County FITC Commit to Mental Health Pledge

Notts County Football in the Community (FITC) are proud to launch the Time to Change Employers Pledge continuing our commitment to promoting and supporting the mental health and wellbeing of our staff, partners, and the wider community. We recognise that it is important we all feel comfortable talking about our mental health and that as an organisation we are proactive in promoting an inclusive agenda across our organisation.

We will work with our partners to deliver our Time to Change action plan to reduce the stigma associated with mental health and promote a work environment in which we feel able to talk about our health. Time to Change recognises the increased pressures of modern life on our mental health and will utilise a wide range of resources to support staff across all our service areas. The key elements of our action plan are:

  • Appointing Mental Health Champions who will focus on promoting workplace wellbeing and creating opportunities for people to talk about mental health in the workplace.
  • Working with our partners to reduce the stigma around mental health to make it easier to talk about our health and access support when we need it.
  • All FITC staff to have confidential access to our Mental Health Specialist.
  • Regular mental health awareness training for all staff including equipping line managers and senior leaders to support mental health in the workplace.
  • Provide information about mental health and signpost to local and national support services.

Ian Boyd, our CEO said: “Mental Health is so important for everyone. If I could encourage anything, it would be to take away any remaining stigma attached to the phrase ‘mental health’. Everyone has mental health and it is constantly flowing through a spectrum of OK, through to needs attention. It’s not always about crisis and negativity and the extremes, it can often be very positive. For me it’s about keeping my mind as clear, focused and happy as I would my body. When we go for a gym workout or to a doctor’s appointment we are often focused on our body, the bits we can see, it’s important we don’t forget about our emotional health too, the bits we can’t see as well, but we definitely still do feel. If you engaged in a piece of physical activity everyday that’s great, your body will thank you for that, but are you doing something every day that supports your mind as well?

In my experience, often good physical health and good mental health go hand in hand, the positives feeling of… the chemical hormones, the cathartic release after a piece of activity. It doesn’t have to be found through formal or organised sport or competition either, it could just be going for a walk or a run, taking a nap, having a chat with a friend, grabbing an early night, or even sitting quietly for a moment reflecting. For me, these are the little tips and tricks we pick up over the years, as we learn what works for us in our own situations and scenarios, the things that help us keep ticking over. Talking is often key, having a few good friends or family members you can go to in order to offload or share every now and then. People you could call your personal support network.

My version of all this is found through running. This is definitely my safety valve. I do most of my best thinking and planning whilst out running. I can burn off any anxiety or anger through the physical act of running and getting out, through fields, grass and nature reconnects me with the environment, animals and the natural world. Running and physical activity I know makes me feels like a better human being. I wonder what your version of all this is?”

We’re proud to be marking World Mental Health Awareness Day with this pledge and very much look forward to working with key mental health partners like ‘blOKes’ to enact our Time to Change action plan. Tom Home, founder of blOKes said: “Notts County Football in the Community’s support of the Employer Pledge speaks volumes about their commitment to improving mental health in the workplace and providing the best possible support for their staff. Now, more so than ever, it’s absolutely crucial that everyone feels comfortable opening up about how they’re feeling - regardless of age, gender or profession.

“As Notts County FC Football in the Community’s official men’s mental health partner, blOKes encourages men everywhere to open up about their mental health, connect with others and share a male tale, so we are thrilled to see their proactive approach towards addressing the stigma around workplace mental health and setting an example for clubs and organisations across the country.”

 


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