Walsall College’s Performing Arts and Creative Media students helped civil engineering specialist Barhale to film a series of clips to raise awareness of mental health to industry managers.
The project saw Walsall College and Barhale work together to create a number of videos as part of the company’s half-day course ‘Engineering Better Mental Health Management’, which helps construction and engineering managers understand the symptoms of mental health problems.
Students helped Barhale to film six mental health scenarios, which includes people displaying symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Level 3 Performing Arts students performed a number of scenarios depicting employees having issues at work, whilst the College’s Creative Media students filmed the scenes.
The first session of Engineering Better Mental Health Management will take place in March at Barhale’s Walsall headquarters, with support from Dudley and Walsall Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust.
Over 200 head office and site based line managers will initially participate in the initiative in order to equip them to not only recognise the signs and symptoms of mental health issues, but become confident to discuss them and deal with them.
Jaswant Sembhi, Work-Experience Co-ordinator at Walsall College, said: “We are delighted to support Barhale in this very worthy project. This was a great opportunity for our Level 3 Creative Media and Performing Arts students to gain experience to support the agenda at Barhale.
This project is one of the live briefs we have provided to our students in collaboration with our employers. These briefs ensure that young people gain the real-life work experience they need to develop and enhance their portfolio and in turn, improve their chances of entering the profession they wish to succeed in.
As a college that works with employers, we are committed to ensuring that they have the tools to safeguard their wellbeing, as well as that of their workforce. This partnership with Barhale is an opportunity to deliver one of our core objectives as an organisation that values safeguarding. That is to reduce the stigma of mental health problems and create an open forum for discussion.”
Jo Southan, Barhale’s Health and Wellbeing Advisor. “The statistics around mental health in construction are truly worrying. It’s been widely recognised that one in four people have mental health concerns, while a report commissioned by Public Health England last year found that male construction workers were at the greatest risk of suicide.
“It is our duty, as a responsible employer, to maintain both the physical and mental welfare of all our colleagues. For us it is particularly pertinent as it is the Year of Engineering. At Barhale we want to look after our colleagues throughout their careers.”
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