Three employees from a bus depot in Newcastle are celebrating after beating off stiff competition from the UK, USA and Canada to receive an award which has recognised their efforts in improving the health of their fellow staff.
At the Stagecoach Group Champions Awards in London, which celebrate excellence, Stagecoach North East bus driver Tony Youmans, engineer David Wynn and assistant operations manager Tom Blacker from the Walkergate depot received the Gold Award in the Health Champion category for their achievements in promoting employee health.
Tony, David and Tom have been the driving force behind a comprehensive health and well-being awareness and improvement programme at their depot, and the initiatives - many of which have been delivered in partnership with medical staff - have been well-received by colleagues.
The team of internal health advocates took up the challenge of improving health among staff, with a series of workplace health campaigns and fitness activities over the past 12 months. This included fun runs and weigh-ins, healthy eating and diet planning, smoking cessation, cancer awareness and alcohol awareness.
Themed days such as ‘Fruity Friday’, where the company provided free fruit to all staff at the depot, were a great success. The initiative has been such a success that it also achieved Bronze in the NHS-backed Better Health at Work Award earlier this year, and the team is now aiming for Silver.
Tom, David and Tony all received a trophy, cash prize and a two night stay in London incorporating the award ceremony. Tom said: “Everyone at the depot has taken this scheme on wholeheartedly and have achieved great personal goals already as a result, so we are thrilled with this award.
“There are so many benefits to this scheme for the company and the staff, and the commitment is so strong, that we are now well underway with planning for further activities and will continue our health awareness campaigns.”
Stagecoach North East Managing Director, Phil Medlicott, said: “I am delighted for Tom, David and Tony, and congratulate them on their efforts in achieving this award, which is thoroughly deserved. They make a real difference to our business and I would like to thank them for their hard work, dedication and commitment.
“We are delighted with the response by the whole of the depot, who have embraced the challenges and activities on offer. Quite simply, our staff are our most important asset and we put our employees’ health and wellbeing first and foremost.”
The Stagecoach Group Champions Awards – now in their sixth year – recognise excellence over six areas including Safety, Health, Community, Customer Service, Environment and Innovation. Winners at the event represented Stagecoach Group’s bus, rail, tram and coach businesses in Europe and North America.