Hospitality Health launches 'wellness charter' for East of Scotland with Tom Kitchin

Gordon McIntyre

Gordon McIntyre

Head Chef 29th May 2019

Hospitality Health launches 'wellness charter' for East of Scotland with Tom Kitchin

Hospitality Health - a new charity dedicated to improving the health and wellbeing of those in the tourism industry launched their wellness charter for the East of Scotland on Wednesday, 29th May following an event at The Balmoral Hotel backed by leading figures in the industry including Michelin-starred chef, Tom Kitchin.

Over 40 Edinburgh tourism businesses came together including hoteliers from The Balmoral, Apex and Manorview Group, leading restaurants like Kitchin group and Contini and luxury accommodation Archerfield and Borthwick Castle, to hear about the support on offer from the charity and their partners.

On a mission to change the way you think about mental health, Hospitality Health wants those who work within the industry to be equipped with the right tools and resilience training to support staff when they need it most. They believe that recognising and understanding emotions is essential for employers and giving them the tools and skills to understand stress will lead to positive change.

Tackling the taboo of mental health, anxiety and addiction that continues to dominate the industry, the charity is asking anyone who works across hospitality in the East – from hotels, restaurants, bars and events to back their wellness charter.

Edinburgh businesses that commit to their wellness charter can adopt an Employee Assistance Programme through the charity’s dedicated online support portal. Working alongside Hospitality Action, the framework is designed specifically to assist hospitality people by providing specialist, independent, confidential advice, support and assistance, whatever the problem. Complete with a 24hour manned helpline by trained staff for employees and access to a suite of confidential support.

Speaking about the Wellness Charter launch, Tom Kitchin said: 'Gordon and his team at Hospitality Health are doing great things for the industry and helping address mental health in tourism. With the launch of their wellness charter in the East, they're helping business owners like myself with their much-needed staff services and toolkit. We look forward to supporting them throughout the year.'

Leading independent restaurant group Contini is supporting the work the charity is doing and has backed the wellness charter.

Speaking about adopting the Employee Assistance Programme as part of the charter, Emma Moore, head of human resources at Contini, said: “We have three restaurants across Edinburgh with around 100 employees; when we first heard about Hospitality Health we thought this would be a helpful and beneficial charity for our workforce to gain support from.

“Gordon and the team at Hospitality Health are so passionate about helping those that work in the industry by providing invaluable information to anyone that may be facing work or personal worries. As a result, we have teamed up with Hospitality Action and are now launching an Employee Assistance Program for all our employees to benefit from. Personally, I think that offering an EAP is a must. It’s a confidential support framework that will provide a variety of help to employees that may be suffering from the highs and lows of working in the hospitality industry and the impacts that this may have on personal lives.

“We have communicated the Hospitality Health website to all our team, and will continue to remind them that there is a wider support network of like-minded professionals who they can connect with should they wish.

“This is a fantastic charity that is current and definitely needed in an industry that whilst is very rewarding can be very tough!”

Working towards a change in culture, Hospitality Health has started collaborating with other leading industry groups to provide a one-stop multi-solution for supporting the industry and providing employers with the right tools and information to support their staff. Hospitality Industry Trust Scotland, Lifelink, Hospitality Action and The Benevolent Society Scotland are just some of the charity partners that they work alongside.

Speaking about the success of East of Scotland wellness charter launch, Gordon McIntyre, chairman of Hospitality Health, says: “Understanding emotions is essential for employers and a powerful motivator for driving positive change.

“What we are trying to achieve with Hospitality Health is to equip our industry with the right tools and resilience training to not only address mental health but to put staff welfare first."

“The more we share experiences the better the industry will become, for now and the future. Thanks to the support of the industry, we can make a change for everyone working in Scotland. If you are interested in hearing more about how our wellness charter can help your staff, please do get in touch via our website.”

More information about the charity can be found at online: www.hospitalityhealth.org.uk

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