What is mental health?

We all have mental health, just as we have physical health. Mental health, like physical health, can fluctuate on a spectrum from good to poor. Poor mental health can affect any of us irrespective of age, personality or background. Mental health problems can appear as a result of experiences in both our personal and working lives – or they can just happen.

Individuals may be affected directly or indirectly, if partners, dependants or other family members have poor mental health, which in turn impact on the associate’s own health. People can also be affected by friends’ and fellow associates’ experiences. Poor mental health can affect the way people think, feel or behave. In some cases, this can seriously limit a person’s ability to cope with day-to-day life, which can impact on relationships, work and quality of life.

Everyone’s experience of poor mental health is different – two people with the same condition may have entirely different symptoms and coping mechanisms. That’s why working with people on an individual basis is so important.

what support is available for you


When you start a new assignment ensure you:

  • Attend one-to-one meeting(s) with your Team Leader
  • Know where the facilities are
  • Know the health and safety requirements
  • Understand clearly the assignment requirements and expectations
  • Understand the ways of working, for example office hours.

Workplace or external triggers

Be alert to the potential workplace triggers for mental health difficulties and discuss with your team leader or operations manager before they happen.

Talk about your mental health

Your 1-2-1s are an opportunity for you to speak with your team leader or operations manager about your situation in your own words and what support you need. The information you share with your line manager will not be shared with work colleagues/other Associates.

Umbrella Workers

If you are engaged through an umbrella company, you should speak with them about your situation as they may have additional support to offer and can work alongside your team leader or operations manager to help you.

Wellness Action Plans

You and your team leader or operations manager can develop Wellness Action Plans to help support you. It is a personalised, practical tool we can all use to help identify what keeps us well at work, what causes us to become unwell and the support we would like to receive to boost our well-being or support us through a recovery.

Seek External Support

You should seek support from your GP or NHS for support such as talking therapies.

Some useful links shown below may help direct you to additional support.

Occupational health Referrals

Your GP or umbrella company may suggest an Occupational Health referral. This will be an external health advisor who may provide some adjustments to your ways of working. Where possible, these will be accommodated.

Mental Health First Aiders

Huntswood has a number of trained mental health first aiders. If you need to speak to one of our mental health first aiders, please contact your Team Leader.


If you feel that you or a colleague has not been treated fairly in respect of your mental health condition please escalate to your team leader in the first instance, notifying your umbrella company with a view that your team leader will work to resolve.

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