‘Supercharge Me’ the first apprenticeship wellbeing event hosted by Drive My Career took place on 9 June 2021. The initiative was designed to support apprentices and young people to actively discuss the importance of looking after their health and wellbeing.
The event was announced during Mental Health Awareness Week in May and was created in response to feedback received from young people during the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey revealed that 73% of respondents had struggled with their mental health during the pandemic.
The Supercharge Me event was split into two sessions, morning and evening, to cater for apprentices who may be busy working during the day. Both sessions were extremely successful, reaching a total of over 100 apprentices.
Three guest speakers from the automotive industry covered a range of engaging topics and encouraged positive discussions relating to young people’s wellbeing.
Matthew Clay, Group Qualifications Manager at Lookers, the first speaker, dissected the success that the group has had with regard to diversity in the workplace and their award-winning apprenticeship programme.
Matthew Clay commented: “Lookers are delighted to have worked with industry partners to support the wellbeing and mental health of apprentices across our sector. Apprentices are the future of our industry; we hope all those who joined the webinar found it useful and that it provided the tools to further build resilience and general wellbeing towards foreseeable careers".
Gill Rughoobeer, Safeguarding & Welfare Manager for Babcock International Group, our second guest speaker, explored the ‘dimensions of wellbeing’ which helps to understand the multifaceted aspects of our lives that contribute to healthy wellbeing. Gill further highlighted that mental health is more common than we think, stating one in four people experience a mental health problem each year, reinforcing the need to address the issue and seek guidance to a positive, healthier lifestyle. Gill shared advice to help with this, such as the signs and symptoms to look out for; an analogy of ‘The Stress Container’ to explain helpful and unhelpful coping mechanisms useful breathing exercises and more.
Gill Rughoobeer commented: “Conversations about mental health are often considered to be a sensitive topic, or something to avoid, but it shouldn’t be! It was great to see so many young people and apprentices attend the event where we could positively discuss how mental health and our personal wellbeing is something so integral to our everyday lives. If I have managed to change even one participant’s perception or outlook towards their wellbeing, I consider it a huge success”.
Rachel Clift, Health and Wellbeing Director for Ben concluded the Supercharge Me event. Ben is the charity dedicated to supporting the people of the automotive industry, providing support for life to them and their family dependents. Rachel introduced Ben and more specifically what health and wellbeing support and services Ben provides. Ben provides readily available self-help content online via their website, operates a dedicated helpline for individuals to reach out to, as well as support and specialist services a range of health and wellbeing interventions including information, advice and guidance, administration of financial support, access to a digital mental health and wellbeing platform, counselling, talking therapies and life coaching.
Rachel Clift commented: “I would like to thank you to NFDA’s Drive My Career for hosting this event, Ben is extremely proud to support the automotive industry, its people and family dependants to make positive changes to their health and wellbeing, as well as improve their lives. Ben provides life-changing support which is tailored to the needs of the individual. So, if you are somebody who feels you may need some help or support with your health or wellbeing, please do not hesitate to reach out us, as we are here for you”.
Sue Robinson, Chief Executive of the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA) concluded: “The Supercharge Me event was designed to bring together Drive My Career’s community of young people to discuss the importance of wellbeing and highlight to apprentices the resources available to them. We look forward to continuing to work with our members and industry partners to promote the automotive industry as a great place to work and support apprentices and young people”.
Drive My Career is the employment initiative developed by the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA) to help dealers attract and retain candidates by raising awareness and improving the perception of the automotive industry. NFDA represents franchised car and commercial vehicle retailers in the UK.
About the RMI
The Retail Motor Industry represents the interests of operators in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man providing sales and services to motorists and businesses. The RMI has a formal association with the independent Scottish Motor Trade Association which represents the retail motor industry in Scotland.