iCare awards $1.1 million for the Hunter Institute of Mental Health to work with small businesses
The Hunter’s small business owners and employees will be asked to help design a practical strategy to identify, prevent and manage mental health and wellbeing challenges in the workplace.
The icare foundation – a government initiative to prevent injury and improve the wellbeing of people injured at work or on the road – will announce on Friday $1.1 million for the Hunter Institute of Mental Health to work with the small business sector and its surrounding networks to develop an “e-health intervention”.
Hunter Institute of Mental Health director Jaelea Skehan said there had been an increased focus on workplace mental health in the past five years, which was linked to the time most people spent at work, and the job-related stressors that put people at risk of or exacerbate mental health problems.
“We often think about big businesses with human resources teams, workplace health and safety, managers and supervisors, and employee assistance programs or flexible support,” Ms Skehan said.
“But 97 per cent of businesses in NSW are small businesses. Going to each of them to develop their own strategy and for each to have the resources and tools they need is a really big investment. We want to ensure small businesses get access to structures and programs that big businesses have within their organisations.”
Ms Skehan said the proposed “e-health intervention” would be a website with screening programs, treatment programs and individual and team activities to boost workplace culture.
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