GBRf’s Wellbeing Champions embarking on their first training session with Suffolk Mind in February.

GB Railfreight is delighted to be marking Mental Health Awareness Week (18 May – 24 May) which champions the theme of kindness, especially in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Like many organisations, GB Railfreight is passionate about trying to break down the stigma relating to mental health and as a company it seeks to create environments where people feel no shame or embarrassment to speak up if they are not ok.

2020 has been a breakthrough year for GBRf’s mental health strategy. It has seen the leading rail freight company work with incredible organisations and influencers such as a Suffolk Mind and Paul McGregor at Every Mind at Work. GBRf has now recruited and trained 45 Wellbeing Champions across the business who act as friendly ears to staff and signpost the free mental health support GBRf offer. This includes professional counselling sessions and access to resources to improve overall wellbeing, as well as the Wellness Centre hosted on GBRf’s Employee Benefits platform.

Marking Mental Health Awareness Week, John Smith, Managing Director of GB Railfreight, said:

“GB Railfrieght remains committed to ensuring all employees can take care of their mental health, especially at this time. Each day we are astounded by the kindness our staff demonstrate to each other and we feel fortunate that collectively that kindness has seen us reach out to communities through our Benefacto staff volunteering scheme and seen us raise over £180,000 for charities in the past year.

 “Statistics show that quarter of people will experience a mental health issue each year, it’s a statistic too big to ignore and our mission is to normalise conversation around mental health, not only in the workplace but to encourage people to discuss their mental health within their households, which is why we also offer our free mental health benefits to the immediate family members of our staff.

“We understand that the coronavirus has brought many new challenges on our mental health such as isolation, concerns over the health of ourselves and loved ones and challenges faced with learning to adapt to new ways of life. Our mission is to instil as much support and transparency as we can to our staff whilst the UK overcomes this virus. We will actively place our staff’s wellbeing firmly in the forefront of our plans during this time and continue to communicate openly and supportively and be sensitive to those challenges faced. As a business, we will champion the efforts of the amazing work mental health charities and industry bodies carry out to raise awareness of mental health issues.”

GBRf wants its staff to feel there is a safe, welcoming and open environment to talk about their mental health and gain access to the best support it can offer. GBRf is committed to placing a big spotlight on mental health both internally through its workplace strategies and through its external presence on social media.

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