Charity expands its wellbeing support

Using feedback received from recent campaigns & research, we're keen to address the gaps in support highlighted, and the issues raised around awareness, confidentiality, and stigma.

Following the release of our workforce wellbeing survey findings that highlighted high levels of burnout in the sector, the charity now plans to expand our wellbeing support offering.

Using feedback received from our recent wellbeing focused campaign and research, we are keen to address some of the gaps in support highlighted, as well as the issues raised around awareness, confidentiality, and stigma.

Having established a new five-year strategy, and refreshed vision and mission, focused on championing the wellbeing of our pharmacy family at the start of 2020, we are now keen to ensure there is support available, not only to help manage and maintain wellbeing, but to better assist those experiencing poor mental health.

“Our recent research has given us a clear steer on what is needed and this has helped us shape our new five year strategy and plans for the coming year” commented Chief Executive Danielle Hunt. “There are some evident gaps in support and barriers to access that we hope to address. Over the next twelve months the charity will look to develop a clear pathway of support that includes more practical and emotional support. We also plan to enhance our volunteer schemes to ensure they reflect the diverse experiences, backgrounds and needs of the individuals within it, as well as to help us increase awareness.

“Following the success of this year’s wellbeing campaign, we are also committed to running our ACTNow campaign again in 2021 and are delighted to announce the continued involvement and support of the Pharmacists’ Defence Association (PDA). Without the continued support of our partners and sponsors, and in particular the PDA, vital support and activities such as our ACTNow campaign would not be possible. Their regular donations year on year give us security and allow us to plan ahead and make long term improvements to the services we provide to thousands of pharmacists and students who seek our assistance every year.”

Paul Day, PDA Director commented “The PDA and the charity provide different types of essential support to members of the profession at times of crisis and also work for longer term improvements to their wellbeing. The annual donation of £1 for each PDA member, plus donations from our members, has now provided more than £110,000 to the charity in just the first 3 years of our formal partnership. As an organisation dedicated to representing the interests of pharmacists, the PDA is proud of our support for Pharmacist Support and we are grateful for the recognition that our contribution makes a difference to Pharmacists’ lives through the work of the charity”

Another strand of the charity’s work in 2021, again highlighted through the survey results, will be around workplace culture. Working in partnership with others in the sector, the charity hopes to support a shift in attitude and we have committed to work with other organisations to encourage and help progress the destigmatisation of mental health in pharmacy.

Through our ACTNow campaign and in particular the popular ‘Your Stories’ features the charity has initiated open conversations in the sector around mental health and wellbeing. It is our hope to continue this conversation more broadly through the introduction of new events, online workshops and through our volunteer schemes.

“We recognize that as an independent organisation, we can help remove some of those ‘confidentiality’ concerns felt by pharmacists and students” said Danielle. “However, with low and uneven awareness levels of the charity, we are conscious that we need to develop and grow our strong connections with organisations and individuals across the sector.

It is only in collaboration with others that we will achieve our vision – that no one in our pharmacy family will face challenging times without us by their side.

“We very much look forward to this exciting period in the charity’s development and encourage all those interested in joining us on this journey – be that as a partner, supporter or volunteer – to connect with us and sign up to receive the charity’s e-news.”

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