Month: March 2015

BT’s Paul Litchfield appointed Chair of the What Works Centre for Wellbeing

Dr Paul Litchfield, Chief Medical Officer and Director of Wellbeing, Inclusion, Safety & Health for BT Group, has been appointed as Chair of the What Works Centre for Wellbeing. Paul Litchfield takes over from Lord Gus O’Donnell, who has been acting as interim Chair since the Centre’s launch in October. Lord O’Donnell said:  I am delighted that Paul Litchfield is taking over from me as Chair of the What Works Centre on Wellbeing. Paul has shown at BT that it is possible for an employer to raise the wellbeing of their staff, which is hugely important of itself, but also leads to higher productivity. Given the long term challenges facing the UK, such as low productivity, ageing, and growing, unmet mental health challenges, the Centre could not ask for a better qualified Chairman than Paul. We worked together on the Wellbeing and Mental Health Committee of the World Economic Forum, where I realised what a fantastic global reputation Paul has in these areas. I am looking forward to supporting him as the Centre’s patron, helping to put wellbeing where it belongs at the top of the UK’s policy agenda. Paul Litchfield said: I am delighted and honoured to have been appointed as Chair of the new What Works for Wellbeing Centre.  There is a growing realisation that human progress cannot be measured solely on the basis of financial measures and...

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International Day of Happiness

Today is the International Day of Happiness. Action for Happiness’ Dr Mark Williamson reflects on how happiness is part of something bigger in the below blog (which first appeared on Huffington Post). ‘Listening to music’ came top of a poll to find the ’10 most enjoyable activities’ by Gallup, people reported ‘being happier when they’re listening to music, but also because it is associated with extremely low levels of stress’. So here at the What Works Centre for Wellbeing we’re joining in with the #HappySoundsLike campaign  for the International Day of Happiness  using the power of music to inspire hope for a better tomorrow. We’ll be tweeting the sounds that make us happy through the day. Happy Friday!   Your Happiness is Part of Something Bigger Dr Mark Williamson, Action for Happiness This Friday is not just the first day of spring, it is also the International Day of Happiness – a day to celebrate the things that contribute to human wellbeing and a flourishing society. One of the strongest findings from all the research about wellbeing is the vital importance of our relationships. We are a deeply social species and we thrive when we’re closely connected to others. But modern society is undermining rather than enhancing these connections. Our cities and public spaces are increasingly crowded, but more of us are living alone and fewer of us know our neighbours. The digital...

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Welsh natural resources improve wellbeing

Our pioneer case study this week looks to Wales and the Come outside! programme which encourages people to get out and about to enjoy the natural resources. The programme aims to remove barriers and support people to use the natural environment to increase physical activity, improve skills, confidence, and overall wellbeing. This pioneer shows a great use of piloting and scaling ideas. → be one of our wellbeing pioneers We here at the What Works Centre for Wellbeing are also getting out and about to meet as many people as we can. We’re putting the wants and needs of our audience at the heart of what we do. In the last few weeks we’ve been inspired by the people we’ve met in Wales and Northern Ireland. We’re holding a roundtable discussion examining wellbeing in Scotland on the 24th March and visiting Doncaster on the 26th March to look at what’s happening locally and talk to practitioners and policy makers to inform our work. Event...

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Come Outside! Welsh Natural Resources improve wellbeing

The Come Outside Programme aims to remove barriers and support people from Community First areas to use the natural environment to increase physical activity, improve skills, confidence, and overall wellbeing. Our work now extends to over 70 groups, enabling over 1600 people to access the outdoors, try new activities, and have fun. In 2005 Countryside Council for Wales (CCW) completed its programme for securing open access to the uplands, the so called ‘Right to Roam’ legislation. A few months after the completion of this mammoth task, which led to the opening up of 350,000 hectares of land with new public access, two...

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Nuffield Health seeks secondary school for Head of Wellbeing pilot

Nuffield Health are seeking UK secondary schools as potential candidates for a pilot which will see a Head of Wellbeing seconded to the school, in a bid to help combat rising levels of poor physical and mental health among pupils and teachers. Nuffield Health has committed to lead, fund and evaluate the initiative which includes the development and implementation of a two year health and wellbeing programme. Independent evaluation of the pilot will be carried out by the Work Foundation. Apply: Closing date, 17th April...

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