Five organisations looking to make a difference to the mental health and wellbeing of Victorian workers have received funding through round one of the WorkWell Mental Health Improvement Fund.

The Arts Wellbeing Collective

Arts wellbeing collective logo

The core purpose of Arts Centre Melbourne is to enrich the lives of Victorians – culturally, educationally, socially and economically and to provide leadership in the promotion and development of the performing arts (Victorian Arts Centre Act 1979). The Arts Wellbeing Collective is a demonstration of this commitment to leadership in the development of the performing arts.

The Arts Wellbeing Collective is an Arts Centre Melbourne initiative that comprises a consortium of more than 100 Victorian arts and cultural organisations whose shared vision is to effect better mental health and wellbeing for performing arts workers.

Building on the success of a 2017 pilot program, Arts Centre Melbourne has developed a three-year strategy that aims to build capability and capacity across the performing arts sector year on year. The project comprises a three-tier program of workshops, resources and sector initiatives; utilising evidence-based tools and strategies from positive psychology, clinical psychology, organisational development and workplace health and safety research. All program elements are specifically tailored to the unique challenges presented by the creative industries.

Objectives of the Arts Wellbeing Collective are to:

  • Improve support services for Victorian arts workers
  • Collate and share information
  • Effect industry cultural change
  • Improve support networks within and between arts organisations.

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Perinatal Workplace Wellbeing Program (PWWP)

Perinatal workplace wellbeing program logo

The teams at Centre of Perinatal Excellence (COPE) and Transitioning Well have come together to develop a pilot Perinatal Workplace Wellbeing Program (PWWP).

Both COPE and Transitioning Well are organisations focused on improving quality of life by supporting people with the emotional aspects of transition. The teams bring a wealth of experience in the development and implementation of training and education programs, which have been successfully delivered across a range of workplaces and industries, including the at-risk industries selected to pilot the program.

The program is specifically designed to support and make a difference to the mental health and wellbeing of expectant and new parents during the *perinatal period in Victorian workplaces.

The aim of the program is to create organisational change to provide working environments that impact positively on the mental health and wellbeing of these workers. Working with key industries, this change will be achieved via a comprehensive workplace training, assessment and support package. Results will show an increase in wellbeing both at individual and organisational levels, and promote cultural change across industries.

Outcomes for the program are based on building individual and organisational capacity to understand the nature of the perinatal transition for workers, whilst piloting organisational level interventions to help create a supportive workplace environment.

* prior to birth, through pregnancy and the first year of a child's life.

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Working Well in Wellington

Wellington Primary Care Partnership logo

The Working Well in Wellington project will test and identify a range of positive mental health strategies for shift workers in the Wellington Shire. The project will particularly focus on strategies that can be implemented in a regional setting.

Delivered over three years, the project will be led by a steering committee that is made up of key partners from the Wellington Primary Care Partnership including mental health, community health and social support services.

Working with Central Gippsland Health (CGH) as a pilot site, a project worker will work with the Human Resources team and shift working staff & their families to identify and implement a range of strategies that address the five protective levels in workplace mental health. These include job design; team and group factors; organisational factors; home/work conflict and individual biopsychosocial factors.

After a 12 month trial at CGH, the project will be rolled out to other employers of shift workers across Wellington who are interested in improving mental health in their workplaces. Employers are yet to be identified however Wellington Shire has a large proportion of shift workers in the community in the corrections, energy and logistics sectors.

The outcomes of the project, including evaluation of strategies and commentary on resources used, will be developed into a resource kit that will be available to all employers in Victoria.

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Mental Health Essentials Program

Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry logo

The Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (VCCI) Mental Health Essentials Program provides practical support and education initiatives to help Victorian employers improve mental health in their workplaces.

Focussing on small to medium-sized businesses who employ a significant number of young* workers (*under 25), the comprehensive program will help employers better understand mental health risks and improve their workplace practices to prevent harm, educate and support their workforce. Delivered over three years, the Mental Health Essentials Program will include:

  • Information forums – to be delivered in metro and regional Victoria
  • The delivery of the Workplace Improvement Program– which involves conducting two workplace visits per participating business, developing a tailored mental health action plan based on the WorkWell Toolkit and delivering onsite mental health training for up to 9,000 leaders and employees
  • The development of practical business resources – for dissemination to workplaces and to support ongoing improvements
  • The collection and analysis of extensive data to further inform this and future activities.

Importantly, this initiative leverages VCCI's extensive work with young people, including their Supporting Young Workers Program and long-standing relationship with Apprenticeship Support Australia.

Conducted by industry experts, it also builds on VCCI's history of delivering WorkSafe’s WorkHealth and OHS improvement programs.

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Wellbeing on Call

superfriend logo

Creating Thriving Contact Centres is an innovative pilot project aiming to protect and promote the mental health and wellbeing of Victorian contact centre workers by improving their job satisfaction and job engagement. SuperFriend will lead this project in collaboration with its Partners from the superannuation and insurance sectors.

The 20-month project will deliver a toolbox of resources and programs focusing on leadership approaches and team leaders' mental health literacy, improving contact centre workers' job design, and creating an environment within which they can thrive.

Wellbeing on Call uses a co-design approach to ensure relevance and value for those participating. It also includes a research evaluation component to help understand the current state of mental health and wellbeing of this vulnerable working population group and determine the project's impact. Findings will help inform development of similar programs for contact centre workers in the financial and insurances services industry.

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Round Three coming soon

Indicative timeframes are that Round Three will open in July 2019.

A briefing will be held to provide feedback on Round Two submissions and information about Round Three.

Further details will be provided closer to the date.

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