Mental wellbeing in uncertain times with Patricia Black, HR Manager of Davy UK

Patricia Black

HR Manager, Davy UK


As we near the end of another week of lockdown #2, I appreciate the uncertainty that each of us are facing, what did we learn from lockdown #1, what can we do differently this time and most importantly how do we look after ourselves and our wellbeing. As HR Manager for Davy UK, I am very mindful of our people and how we as a Company can best support each other during COVID-19.

We made a commitment early in 2020 that we would train 4 of our people to become ‘Mental Health Champions’. We wanted to recognise World Mental Health Day on the 10th October by educating and offering our people some time to think and reflect by running daily bite-size sessions on looking after your mental health.

Give: Giving to others is very beneficial for your mental health. At Davy we are proud partner of the Children’s Cancer Unit Charity and being able to give back to them has been massively rewarding for all of us.

Keep Learning: Learning a new hobby or skill can be a great stress reliever. We wanted to offer our people the opportunity to become ‘Artists’ for a night with Aly Harte Art School.

Be Active: The only workout you regret is the one you didn’t do. We offer weekly Yoga sessions via zoom for all staff to enjoy at their own pace.

Take Notice: Mindfulness and paying attention to the present moment, your thoughts and feelings tell you so much about yourself.

Connect: Over lockdown, anytime I spoke with our people I always asked the following questions: How are you? How is your family? How can I support you, what can I do to help? We should not lose sight of the importance of conversation. Reach out today and you will make such a difference to someone’s day.

We closed the week with delivering a wellbeing box to all our staff, little gifts for them to enjoy; but also, ones that reinforced the learnings from the week i.e. a gratitude journal. At the moment we can’t offer the same support at events for our charity partner the CCUC; despite this, we wanted to thank the nurses and staff that look after these wonderful children at the Royal Victoria Hospital and in doing so we delivered 18 wellbeing boxes to them, at a time when there is increasing pressure for the NHS, we made this day particularly special for them.

When we listen to the news on a daily basis we know we aren’t out of the woods yet, and whilst some may feel that the challenge is mounting, there is one thing that I have seen time and time again in Northern Ireland and it is our resilience. Despite the setbacks we have encountered and the difficulties that COVID 19 has presented us with, it is our people that set us apart, we will all rise above this time, we will learn from it and we will talk about it for years to come.

As a business, we work together as One Team every day, we collaborate with each other via the virtual platforms and we make sure we stay connected. To my earlier point on resilience; that we have an abundance of, and we will all bounce back, we always do.