mental health

Historic Dockyard Chatham becomes first heritage site to sign mental health pledge

Main Image: Model of HMS Victory. Victory was built at Chatham Historic Dockyard.

Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust has signed the ‘Time to Change Employer Pledge’, which publicly demonstrates a commitment to change how we think and act about mental health in the workplace and ensuring that employees and volunteers whom are facing these problems feel supported.

The Historic Dockyard Chatham is the first heritage site in the country to take demonstrate this tangible commitment by signing the pledge. Time to change is a growing social movement working to change the way society thinks and acts about mental health problems with one in four people experience a mental health problem in our lifetime. The movement has already reached millions of people and begun to improve attitudes and behaviour.

The Historic Dockyard says that stigma and discrimination still exist when it comes to mental health, particularly in the workplace. “Therefore, tackling stigma, promoting awareness and developing a safe, open and supportive environment where our employees and volunteers feel able to talk openly about their mental health problems is a priority within our organisation.”

This Pledge means that when the time comes, and someone needs support with any mental health issues, all managers know exactly how to help. The Trust now has17 Mental Health Champions who are those they have volunteered from the company to be there in times of need for advice. “Most importantly, we recognise that people are individuals and there is not a ‘one size fits all’ approach – it’s about making sure people have access to the right support, at the right time, and in a way, which suits them.”

Bill Ferris OBE, DL – Chief Executive of Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust said that as an organisation, Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust sees mental health as just part of its employees and volunteer’s overall wellbeing and helping keep our people fit, healthy and happy is playing a particularly important role in our pledge and ongoing support of those that work for the Trust.

“We are very proud to be supporting the health and well-being of all of our staff and volunteers, a well-motivated team is of critical importance to the successful operation of our unique charity,” he said. “As an employer, Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust has always aspired to provide the highest levels of care and support to all of those that choose to work with us and by signing this pledge, we are hoping that other heritage sites follow our lead to demonstrate the importance of the health and well-being of the individuals we work with”.