Redrow launches mental health campaign for 2,300 staff


Housebuilding organisation Redrow is today (Friday 29 March 2019) launching a new mental health campaign for the 2,300 employees and approximately 18,600 subcontractors working with the business.

The campaign, called Mind Your Head, has been designed to support employees and subcontractors with their mental health, providing education as well as encouraging workplace conversations to reduce stigma and discrimination around mental health issues. The campaign aligns to Redrow’s business strategy, which has a focus on valuing people.

Karen Jones, HR director at Redrow, said: “Valuing people is at the heart of what we do here at Redrow. We know that mental health in our industry is a concern, with two construction [employees] every day committing suicide, so our campaign really delivers on our commitment to ensure that Redrow is a safe and supportive place to come and work.”

As part of the campaign, Redrow will deliver ongoing support via a network of 120 internal mental health first aiders, as well as invite managers and directors from across the business to attend a training day to ensure that cultural change is implemented from the top down.

Redrow will also provide toolbox talks on each of its development sites for both employees and subcontractors, offer drop-in sessions to facilitate opportunities for staff to talk to mental health first aiders in a safe and confidential environment, and work with local schools to educate children on the importance of mental health and wellbeing.

The mental health campaign follows on from Redrow’s 2018 health and wellbeing initiative, which saw the organisation roll out 15 health kiosks at selected development sites across its regional divisions, providing staff and subcontractors with personal health metrics such as their heart age, blood pressure, body mass index (BMI) and body fat. The programme also included a wellbeing survey, which quizzed employees on physical and emotional wellness, sleep, smoking, nutrition, alcohol consumption and chronic health conditions.

This work enabled Redrow to gather feedback from 51% of its employees, as well as 461 subcontractors. This data was used to inform the new Mind Your Head campaign.

The results of the health and wellbeing initiative also led to Redrow extending its employee assistance programme (EAP), MyLife, to all of its subcontractors and their families. This offers a 24/7 helpline that provides confidential advice and telephone counselling for both personal and work-related problems.

Redrow signed the Building Mental Health Charter in December 2018; this commits construction organisations to promote awareness and understanding of mental health and to work to reduce associated stigma.

Redrow initially communicated the Mind Your Head campaign to employees via its Building Responsibly Conference in March 2019. Following this, the campaign is being promoted on the staff intranet, using posters on-site and through the organisation’s mental health first aiders.

Celia Williams, engagement manager at Redrow, added: “This is a really exciting step to reducing the stigma of mental health in our industry. To support our employees and subcontractors, the role of mental health first aider on-site is going to be crucial and we will be working with teams on-site to explore ways to best support them.

“Toolbox talks on-site will also be a great way of encouraging a culture of openness and support and will enable us to ensure we as [an organisation] are putting the correct measures in place.”