Empowering People to Wellness

Angie Paskevicius, CEO Holyoake

Isn’t it an irony that our hyper-connected technological era can leave people feeling more disconnected than ever before? It is not uncommon for someone to have over a thousand friends on Facebook, but not a genuine mate to count on.

Isolation, mental health issues, substance misuse and suicide are common side-effects of our time. Over 3.5 million Australians are seriously impacted by alcohol and other drugs1. An average of 8 Australians choose to end their lives every single day2.

At Holyoake, we reach out to thousands of people affected by alcohol, drugs and related issues. We welcome them with a holistic, non-judgemental approach in a safe and caring environment. Our evidence-based counselling programs are not just for people at the deep end, but also for those affected indirectly - parents, partners, children, adolescents, family and friends.

We have gone a step further by investing in social enterprises to build resilience and to manage issues before they escalate into problems. Our DRUMBEAT program is achieving proven social outcomes across Australia and around the world. Our DRUMBEAT Quest computer game improves resilience, social and emotional learning in young people. Our Wellbeing@Work programs raise awareness of stress and unhealthy coping in workplaces. Our free app My Wellbeing Mate connects people to a wide range of wellness resources.

We are doing our best to bring lasting changing to individuals, families and communities. I encourage YOU to think about contributing positively to the wellbeing of those around you.

As a business owner or senior executive, you have an opportunity to nurture a working environment that enhance wellbeing – not just physical health, but mental health as well. You can encourage people to talk about issues and help chip away at the stigma that surrounds mental health.

The reality is that many people spend more waking hours at work than anywhere else. So if they are happy at work, it can have a positive influence on the rest of their lives as well. In addition, happy team members are more productive. Recent research by Price Waterhouse Coopers revealed that for every $1 dollar invested in a mental health workplace initiative, employers can expect an average return of $2.303.

Yes, you can make a difference. As John Maxwell once said: “Leaders become great not because of their power, but because of their ability to empower others.”

If you are keen, we can work with you to customise a plan specifically for your organisation. Please contact me or visit www.holyoake.org.au/our-programs/wellbeingwork/

1The National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre study 2010
2Australian Bureau of Statistics – Causes of Death 2016
3Creating a Mentally Healthy Workplace – Return on Investment Analysis, PWC 2014

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