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The Sport and Physical Activity Partnership for London

News

05.11.2007 |

Activate your workplace

Evidence shows that active, healthy employees are more productive, have less unplanned absenteeism and have lower staff turnover.

Workplaces delivering a resourced and structured programme of healthy activities make employees feel more valued, increase their morale and help internal communications. "Activate your Workplace" is a one year training and support programme to help organisations design, deliver and monitor ongoing healthy activities while developing internal capacity to ensure that programmes have built in sustainablity. Following completion of the programme, participating organisations should have an active and healthy workplace policy and a member of staff trained and knowledgable in workplace health.

Partnership working is at the heart of "Activate your Workplace" which is being led by The Centre for Workplace Health, St Mary’s University College, Twickenham, London, in partnership with Sport England, Transport for London,The London Development Agency, The Fitness Industry Association and NHS London. The partners provide funding or offer incentive packages and access to their expertise and services.

Organisations participating in "Activate your Workplace" are invited to attend three workshop sessions in Central London as well as receiving on site support from a visiting outreach coordinator. The outreach coordinator will provide on-going support throughout the year and help with any queries that arise. The workshop sessions and support will provide a representative from the organisation with the knowledge and skills to promote health in the workplace.

The delivery programme is determined through an initial employee needs assessment and may typically include activities such as lunchtime and evening activity classes e.g., street dance, self defence, yoga, team pedometer challenges, healthy eating talks and exhibitions, weight management groups, smoking cessation groups, cycle lessons and cycle maintenance lessons.

Twelve workplaces across London have been recruited to take part in the first phase of "Activate your Workplace" with six workplaces from the public sector and six workplaces from the private sector. The workplaces represent a good geographical spread and come from a variety of market sectors. They include very well known and less well known organisations. The job roles, ethnicity of staff, size of workplace and reasons for joining "Activate your Workplace" are diverse but each workplace provides both a unique challenge and an exciting opportunity to both embed practice and policy to improve the health of the workforce and deliver benefits for the organisations.

Future progression of the project is dependent on successful completion of the pilot, but the project partnership have expressed an interest in scaling up and rolling out the programme over forthcoming years.

Interested workplaces, should contact the Director of the Centre for Workplace Health, Monica Frost at frostm@smuc.ac.uk