‘Safe Space’ huge boost for staff morale at Health Centre

By Aimee Walsh

A NEW ‘Safe Space’ has been created at Mary Mercer Health Centre, funded by the HSE Staff Health & Wellbeing Funding Initiative.

The space consists of three garden benches and planters, to allow an area for staff to sit, eat their lunch and chat in a safe environment.

Mercer Health Centre 01 1

Staff at Mary Mercer Health Centre Tony Clymes, Catherine Jackman (PHN), Joan Walsh, William Adamson, Lisa Flynn, Joan Mahon and Karollyni Vierra

The HSE Staff Health and Wellbeing programme was created to improve the health and wellbeing of their workforce by creating a healthy and safe workspace for all their staff.

Public Health Nurse Catherine Jackman at Mary Mercer Health Centre in Jobstown, says that the space is a “huge boost for staff morale”.

“The whole idea behind it was that we could only fit four people in our kitchen, and usually our kitchen is a place where people would come and eat and socialise, and everyone is eating in their rooms now, so it’s not very social. Morale was kind of low in the area, this will allow people to come and sit and eat and chat safely.”

Mary Mercer Health Centre currently has around 40 to 50 employees, all of whom will benefit from using the space.

“We have staff from all disciplines such as speech and language, mental health, occupational therapists. We have a wide variety of staff here at Mary Mercer that will all use the space.” says Catherine.

The benches are made using recycled plastic, from an Offaly-based company called ‘Irish Recycled Products’, who specialise in eco-friendly outdoor furniture.

“It’s approved by environmentally friendly initiatives, and it’s really durable and hard wearing it’s great stuff. It’s reasonable as well, it is well worth the money.

“I just want to say thank you to the project for giving us the funding. It’s a boost to us, we haven’t stopped since Covid. We have had to put on our armour and battle and anything small of a morale boost is worth a lot here, because things have been so hard.” Catherine told The Echo.

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