Supporting each other to build a people-first future

May 1-7, 2023 is Mental Health Week, a social change campaign sponsored by the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) to shift attitudes and perceptions about mental health and bring awareness to this important topic, at home and at work.

Concert Properties takes a holistic approach towards employee well-being that addresses both mental and physical health, and so this week we reflect on the initiatives that we have available to support the mental health of all our employees.

This past year, as part of our recently launched Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) strategy, we updated and reintroduced our Respectful Workplace policy to prioritize a healthy and safe workplace.

Training, resources and tools are easily available online through our internal portal to help employees assess their mental health and manage stress. In recognition of Mental Health Week, we are providing an optional webinar for all employees on building resilience, understanding challenges, learning strategies and accepting change. Employee and Family Assistance Programs, including coaching services, online cognitive behavioural therapy and access to TELUS Health Virtual Care for 24/7 patient-first care are also available.

We support our people, but we also want them to support each other. At Concert Properties, our Mental Health First Aiders (MHFAs) are trained to help our employees’ in their well-being journey. These dedicated MHFAs develop the skills and knowledge to recognize the signs of other employees who might be struggling with mental health issues and to provide initial support in a safe, trusted space.

For Ashley Crescini, a Senior Sales Administrator and MHFA volunteer, that means supporting colleagues and championing mental health at work and at home. “I believe one's mental health and well-being are a vital part of our daily lives. It allows us to be the best versions of ourselves, whether it be at work or in our personal lives,” says Ashley. “As an MHFA volunteer at Concert Properties, I hope to hear my colleague’s stories, and provide safety, empowerment, kindness and understanding.”

As meaningful conversations and stories about mental health issues are shared, people soon realize they are not alone.

“I chose to participate in the MHFA training because I wanted to equip myself with the tools to help those around me,” says Vivian Lam, Resident Services Agent, Property Management. “I have witnessed the toll that struggling silently can take on someone and would like to be a resource for anyone who needs support. I’m proud to be part of working towards an environment at Concert Properties where everyone can feel comfortable asking for help when they need it.”

“The MHFA program shows what a difference a few people can make by opening up those conversations and offering support. As an employer, we must do everything we can to facilitate this learning and open communications about mental health,” says Aran Clarke, Senior Vice President, People Experience. “We will continue to focus on developing our employee experience and well-being and defining what it means to be part of the Concert Properties team, because putting people first is at the heart of our story.”

This year’s Mental Health Week theme, as led by CMHA, is centred around sharing stories. We encourage you to follow #MyStory to join the conversation. Click here to learn more.