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Stockport NHS workers have been enjoying a new way to relax and take a break thanks to the visit of special wellbeing bus to Stepping Hill Hospital.
The bus is the work of Project Wingman, a charity formed by flight crew during the Covid-19 pandemic to give NHS workers the chance to take time to care for themselves, as well as others, during their busy workdays.
Project Wingman is a charity founded in March 2020: a call was put out to the airline community, then ‘grounded’ at the time, with the idea of taking crew into NHS hospitals to look after NHS staff during their breaks in dedicated lounges. An incredible 6,500 airline crew answered their call for volunteers, from across every UK airline. They offer their time, knowledge and skills to serve and support NHS staff, providing vital well-being and mental health support.
After the charity’s initial launch, the team have rolled out first class Wingman Lounges to over 100 hospitals across the UK, and have now established the mobile lounge concept to take well-being on the road.
Staff in Stockport have been able to come aboard the ‘Wellbee’ bus, enjoying free drinks and snacks, read magazines, relax on comfortable furniture and chat with the Wingman crew about whatever they want. Hospital and community staff, as well as partnership staff such as ambulance crews have all been welcome.
The bus has been outside the hospital’s education centre which has also currently serves as its staff COVID-19 booster and flu vaccination centre, and so many have been taking the opportunity to combine vaccination with relaxation.
Jack Brown Project Wingman Team Leader, Stockport said:
“I am incredibly proud to of Wellbee’s visit to Stockport NHS Foundation Trust. The whole team of volunteers have thoroughly enjoyed our time here providing tea and empathy, and well-being support to their amazing NHS staff.”
Tracey Etchells, Head of Human Resources for Stockport NHS Foundation Trust said:
“Its so important for our colleagues to look after their own health and wellbeing as well as others, and taking time to relax is a vital part of that. The Wellbee bus visit has been a great new way for colleagues to take time out, and we’re hugely grateful to everyone at Project Wingman for their kind support.”
The visit has lasted for two weeks with the last session on Friday 19th November. It will also be making a return visit in January next year.