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Commitments to positive mental health reaffirmed

Supporting the mental health of learners and staff is a major ongoing commitment for Eastleigh College and senior leaders have met to officially reaffirm their commitments to promoting wellbeing and proactively supporting the mental health of learners and staff.

The signing ceremony (pictured) took place with Chair of the Board of Governors - Jon Sendell, Chief Executive and Principal - Paul Cox, Head of HR and Talent Development - Mickiela Blake and Head of Learner Support and Designated Safeguarding Lead - Tracey McAdam.

  • By signing the AOC Mental Health and Wellbeing Charter, we recognise that our college has a responsibility to create an environment that promotes learner and staff wellbeing and that proactively supports learner and staff mental health.
  • By re-signing the ‘Charter for Employers Positive about Mental Health’, the college commits to creating a supportive and open culture, where colleagues feel able to talk about mental health confidently, and aspire to appropriately support the mental wellbeing of all staff.

Recently, the college launched an online Mental Health Hub as part of its Mental Health Action plan and strategy. The Hub provides insights, tools and techniques on how to manage mental health and wellbeing, how to spot signs and symptoms early, build resilience and access support when needed.

In addition, and to support learners to be better equipped to cope with the pandemic, the College adapted the curriculum for study programme learners in 2020/21 to include a mental health awareness qualification. The qualification was successfully completed by over 900 16-19 learners with learner feedback being very positive.

Chair of the Board Jon Sendell said "Supporting learner and staff mental health and wellbeing is important all-year round, but it is even more crucial during this uncertain and troubling time. I am proud of the hard work and dedication shown by everyone at the college towards this issue.”

Eastleigh College Chief Executive and Principal Paul Cox said: “The online Mental Health and Wellbeing Hub places positive mental health and resilience at the centre of college activities. It pulls together the full range of support we have been developing since signing up to the Mindful Employer charter in 2015. We are committed to the Association of Colleges’ Mental Health and Wellbeing Charter created in 2019 and launched the Eastleigh College Mental Health & Wellbeing Strategy in August 2020.”

Tracey McAdam, Head of Learner Support and Designated Safeguarding Lead at Eastleigh College explains what the strategy and action plan mean: “We will continue to run Mental Health Awareness tutorial sessions for all learners and to provide non-judgemental and proactive support to individuals who experience mental ill health. Anyone who has experienced mental ill health will not be discriminated against and we will enable the right level of support or adjustment to be offered whenever a mental health problem is disclosed. We will also continue to take a proactive approach to the mental health of our learners with a key focus on physical wellbeing and building resilience"

Mickiela Blake, Head of HR and Talent Development added: “We are committed to the continuous development and improvement of our Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy. Our focus group will continue to drive and champion positive mental health for all staff.”