Employee wellbeing is centre stage of new initiative

Small businesses in Somerset are being encouraged to make a pledge to improve workplace wellbeing as part of a new initiative being launched by Somerset County Council.

The innovative Somerset SME Wellbeing project, funded by Somerset County Council’s Public Health team, includes training opportunities and is being delivered by New Leaf Life Design to help sole traders and SMEs in Somerset.

The project launches against the backdrop of national figures which show one in five small businesses have seen a 70 per cent decrease in their income among other challenges.

The focus is on supporting those who have been impacted by covid – through the virus itself, experience of lockdown or the impact of the recession. It is particularly aimed at the construction, health and social care, arts and entertainment, visitor economy, and farming and agriculture industries.

Becky Wright, project co-ordinator, said, “It would be so exciting to really put Somerset on the map as the wellbeing capital of the UK. It’s been so tough for businesses and it’s good to have something positive to focus on.

“When we look after our own wellbeing and those we work with it benefits our customers, supply chains and the wider community. Visitors will enjoy staying more at places which look after their staff, customers want to buy from businesses who place staff wellbeing as a priority – it’s a win, win.”

The project is looking for 100 SMEs and sole traders to help make Somerset the centre of wellbeing to live, work and stay in. All that is asked of businesses is to sign up to the following five pledges:

  • To encourage conversations about wellbeing
  • To know where to signpost for help and support
  • To encourage training of all staff in wellbeing and mental health
  • To take steps to look after your own wellbeing
  • To encourage and organise green wellbeing pause points

The business will then be added to a Wellbeing Map of Somerset.

You can make the sign-up pledge at https://www.newleaf.uk.com/smewellbeing/

Businesses will be able to download a special certificate and badge which can be placed on their premises or website to show they support wellbeing within their business, no matter the size of the company.

The project is supported by local business chambers, business groups, employment services and Visit Somerset.

Businesses can access free Mental Health and Wellbeing training this year


There are also five dedicated pages where all the free support is listed along with the five ways to wellbeing ideas:

Construction https://www.newleaf.uk.com/smeconstruction
Visitor Economy https://www.newleaf.uk.com/smehospitality
Agriculture and Farming https://www.newleaf.uk.com/smeagriculture
Health and Social Care https://www.newleaf.uk.com/smehealth
Arts and entertainment https://www.newleaf.uk.com/smeart

Landing page https://www.newleaf.uk.com/smewellbeing/