Pagabo News

Mental Health Awareness Week 2024: It’s an everyday issue

13 May 2024

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week (MHAW), an annual event led by the Mental Health Foundation. The theme this year is “Movement: Moving more for our mental health”, which is something we fully support. To mark the occasion, we sat down with our chief procurement officer and Pagabo Foundation trustee Jason Stapley to catch up on the charity’s latest activity.

What does this year’s MHAW theme mean to you and the foundation?

Movement can be a central tactic in tackling mental health and something the Pagabo Foundation promotes through various events every year. We are less than a week away from the third annual Feelgood Games, taking place in Leeds ahead of UKREiiF.

The fitness movement has proved hugely successful, and we can’t wait to see new and familiar businesses take on the fun, team-building challenge while raising money to support us with our mission in offering mental health first aid training to those in the construction sector. We’re pleased to be joined by Tom Riordan, chief executive at Leeds City Council, this year, who will be opening up the event. A vocal mental health champion himself, it’s important we have people from different backgrounds and in different positions supporting the same cause.

We recognise the importance of organising consistent exercised-based events and are looking forward to a 31-mile walking challenge in Yorkshire next month, as well as The Extra Mile bike ride in September and the return of our popular five-a-side football event in November.

Do you think other influential organisations are similarly motivated by your mission?

I do. The number of partnerships between the Foundation and others driven by tackling mental health continues to grow. Through the Feelgood Games, we will be helping the everyday activity carried out by Andy’s Man Club, Mates in Mind and Community Links. Organisations are raising awareness and supporting people struggling in their own unique way, so we will continue to support each other in supporting others.

We’re in a privileged position at the Foundation because we are connected to more than 700 construction businesses through Pagabo, which is fostering powerful relationships and creating a greater impact.

The Foundation has been operating for a number of years now, what’s next?

The Pagabo Foundation will celebrate its fifth birthday later this year, and I’m sure the other trustees will agree with me in saying that we’re incredibly proud of what we have helped to achieve in that time. As we approach this milestone, we are looking back at the impact so far and taking stock of the progress. The mission is far from complete though and there is important work still to be done in education, training and industry. In short, we won’t be stopping any time soon and would like to ensure that everyone entering the construction industry is the most resilient they can possibly be.

How can MHAW be used effectively?

There is so much that businesses can be doing to raise awareness and provide support for their people. The Mental Health Foundation has a range of resources that advise on this, but to use Pagabo as an example we will be putting on an open-door coffee and cake session to generate engagement with our mental health first aiders and signpost people towards either support they may want, or how to become a first aider themselves.

Everyone is different and that’s why it’s important mental health awareness activity is treated as an everyday issue, not only so people know that support and advice is always available, but also that there are different ways to get involved. You never know when and where people will want to take part, but making access as easy as possible will only help overcome the challenge.

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