Business that are supporting my Biggest Journey, by donating to the the cause in both money and with their time and expertise, have helped make this challenge possible.
If you have read the details about my Biggest Journey and are interested in becoming a business partner, please read about the sponsorship opportunity below.
I’m focusing on two key messages:
1) the importance of mental health awareness in the workplace
2) the benefits of regular exercise (like cycling) to mental wellbeing
Mental health in the workplace
The National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) estimate in their 2009 public health guidance that the annual cost of mental ill-health to employers in the UK is as high as £28.3 billion.
Forty per cent of sick days are due to mental ill-health. However the greatest cost of mental ill-health to employers is not absenteeism. Rather, it is “presenteeism”, defined as “loss in productivity when employees who work when ill and perform at a lower level because of their illness” (Cooper and Dewe 2008). Presenteeism accounts for 1.5 times more working time lost than absenteeism and is more common among higher-paid employees.
Presenteeism happens when people are afraid to admit they have a problem. Mental illness still carries a profound stigma, especially in the workplace. People struggle on through fear, shame, guilt and denial: losing productivity, making bad judgements, and affecting their workmates. Wouldn’t it be better if people were able to admit they had a problem and seek help without fear?
The benefits of exercise
It is now widely acknowledged that regular physical exercise is enormously beneficial for mental wellbeing as well as physical health. A number of studies have shown it to be as effective as anti-depressants in treating mild to moderate cases of depression and other mental illness, and in some parts of the country GPs are able to prescribe exercise through gym membership or similar.
Physical exercise is both treatment and preventative. It lifts mood, improves sleep patterns, contributes to enhance self-esteem and helps build a sense of control – all essential ingredients for mental wellbeing.
Cycling is one of the fastest-growing sports in the UK, and one of the few industries to experience growth during the recession. The enormous success of the Great Britain cycling team in the Beijing Olympics and subsequent World Championships has raised very high expectations for the London Olympics in August and increased interest in cycling as a whole.
I’m offering the opportunity for companies to align themselves with this very worthwhile cause through a sponsorship package.
It’s a chance for organisations to position themselves in a positive way with an issue high on the political and social agenda, and to raise awareness of the importance of mental health among their staff. You’ll be boosting your corporate social responsibility, helping to protect your own workers and supporting the wider awareness of mental health in the community.
Though feature sponsorship placements on printed material and cycle jerseys have all gone, benefits to sponsoring organisations still include:
- Logo branding online through the Biggestjourney.com website and Twitter feed
- Logos on Biggestjourney website linking to your company website and a space to add a quote as to why you support Biggest Journey’s cause
In return, I am seeking either an appropriate cash donation to the cause, or significant support in kind, for example with travel, accommodation or equipment.
If this project is a success, and I firmly believe it will be, I aim to continue to use the Biggest Journey name to increase awareness of mental illness through public speaking, blogging, and documentary video. My promotion of your company would be ongoing through these additional activities.
To discuss this opportunity further, please contact me