Healthy working award is just the ticket for South Shields bus depot
A South Shields bus depot has been honoured for its commitment to keeping its workforce healthy.
Stagecoach North East’s depot in Dean Road received the Bronze Better Health at Work Award as part of an initiative to promote health and wellbeing in workplaces across the North East.
The company has signed up to the minimum four-year programme and will build up to achieve Silver, Gold and Continuing Excellence standard over the next three years.
The programme is a partnership between local authorities in the region, the Northern TUC and local providers, including the NHS.
To achieve the Bronze Award, ‘health advocates’ at the depot took up the challenge of promoting the health and wellbeing scheme among staff, with a series of workplace health campaigns and fitness activities taking place over the past 12 months.
Three staff members took up the role of internal health advocates – operations manager Janine Fowley and bus drivers Elke Walker and Adam Parker – as part of the award and spearheaded the initiative within the organisation.
The team carried out a ‘Health Needs’ survey and found the top three topics staff wanted to improve were men’s and women’s health, physical activity and healthy eating, so they looked at various activities that could be achieved in the workplace and beyond.
The depot team had a great time at the Active Workplace Games, organised by Tyne Wear Sports, giving staff a chance to take part in activities they haven’t had the opportunity to try before, such as archery, and batak – a series of lights on a frame to press when lit to test speed, agility and response times.
They also took part in a Halloween-themed games competition and even dressed the part with fake knives and axes.
“Given the nature of the business, it can be difficult to get groups of people together at the same time, so a lot of our work for the portfolio was centred around visual campaigns, such as ‘poop’ posters displayed during Bowel Cancer Awareness Week,” said Janine.
“A urine colour chart soon followed and many drivers realised that they need to increase their intake of water. It is a common trait as most drivers are guilty of not drinking enough water so they can avoid going to the toilet whilst out on the road.”