Wellbeing Champions inspired to spread the word

Topic People, Wellbeing

Date 11 May 2022

Wellbeing Champions play an important role in our overall health and wellbeing strategy across Galliford Try and Morrison Construction and can often be seen promoting the our health and wellbeing programme ‘Be Well’ out on our sites and in our offices. 

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle through appropriate exercise and diet and creating a positive work-life balance has an important impact on our mental health, and our ability to perform at work and make the most of our personal lives.

Our Wellbeing Champions are all volunteers and have their own personal passion and inspiration for getting involved. Here a few of our Wellbeing Champions explain what motivates them to take on this important role.

Chris King-Hill, Senior Site Manager for Galliford Try Building West Midlands, Solihull

"I have been in the construction industry for over 20 years, beginning as a flat roofer, before becoming a qualified carpenter, then as logistics manager and now as a site manager. While working full time as a Senior Site Manager I completed a Master’s degree in Art Health and Wellbeing.

"The Masters enabled me to combine both my arts background and my experiences of the construction industry and evidence the impacts and outcomes these two very different industries had on each other. It also enhanced my health and wellbeing knowledge, which is when I realised that the construction industry had not even considered these topics at this stage and why they were so important.

"This is where I decided to make a difference from within the industry and break down the toxic masculinity that came from the industry being male dominant. On researching such things as male suicide rates, depression, and other stress related issues within construction I knew it had to change and becoming a wellbeing champion was one of the main ways I could start to achieve my goals.

"Making people aware of your existence on a construction site automatically unlocks the stigma attached and unknowingly opens the conversation. My main objective is to listen, support and be emotional supportive. Ultimately, I became a wellbeing champion to stop the silence and encourage individual empowerment, where people can start their journey to better health physically and mentally.  

Jillian McRury, Health and Safety Systems Lead for ESD Joint Venture, Glasgow.

“I have worked in the construction industry for nearly 20 years now, I can’t quite believe that and obviously I don’t look old enough but sadly it’s true! I have always enjoyed working in Health and Safety and have seen many changes throughout the years. I chose this career as I care about people - I believe everyone should go home safe from work every day having sadly lost too many close family through workplace accidents.

“Over the last few years, I have realised how much our Mental Health and Wellbeing affects how present we are and in turn how that can impact the decisions we make both in work and in our personal lives. This is why I am so keen to be part of any wellbeing initiatives and also why I became a Mental Health and Wellbeing Champion. To be able to acknowledge when things aren’t right is a key part of being safe both for ourselves and others, and I am keen to spread that message."

Kirsteen Macdonald, Office Manager for Morrison Construction Building Highland, Inverness

“I previously worked in the military, and as a fire fighter and also have experience in management, Human Resources and accounts.  I have a strong personal interest in wellbeing, having put myself through my personal trainer exam, advance nutrition, mental health ‘A’ level and advance psychology exams. I also completed a two-year project while working for Police Scotland that saw me nominated for the Chief Executive Awards for Excellence in Wellbeing.

“I am passionate about health and how physical and mental health impact each other. I enjoy helping others and thrive on learning and evolving with the newest research on all aspects of our health.  I like to think I lead by example as a keen runner and an advocate for good nutrition and sleep but it is very important to recognise that life is all about finding our own balance and we are not all the same. The support that others may need to achieve their goals and maintain their physical and mental health may be very different.”