To mark National Mental Health Week (14-20 May) we’re delighted to announce that over the coming year Cedar will be working closely with mental health charity Mind to raise awareness and funds to support their fantastic work.
Robert Baker, CSR committee member, explains the background to the decision:
“Cedar’s always taken its social responsibilities extremely seriously. Over the years we’ve raised some great amounts – and had a lot of fun doing so – for a number of charities and we wanted to make sure this continued. That’s why, as the company’s continued to grow, we decided it was time to formalise things by setting up an official CSR committee.
When it came to choosing our Charity of the Year, it was an easy decision to make. Although mental health problems can affect anyone, accountancy is recognised as being particularly susceptible to stress-related ill health. Mind, however, has played a huge part in raising awareness and in making sure people get the support they need.”
The decision is even more timely as this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week focuses on stress, something which can affect people in all aspects of life, not least the workplace. As a high-pressure, competitive career, stress is a major concern within finance and accountancy. A survey carried out by the Chartered Accountants Benevolent Association (CABA), for example, cited in ICAEW publication Economia, revealed that workplace stress had caused 42% of respondents to consider resigning, with around 14% actually handing in their notice.
Unfortunately, many people still believe that admitting to difficulties could damage their career prospects – something that Cedar is keen to help challenge, as CEO Howard Bentwood describes:
“From a personal point of view, I couldn’t be happier. Supporting Mind will not only raise funds for a fantastic organisation but, by demonstrating our commitment to tackling and supporting mental health issues, it’ll also open up space for people to talk about these issues within Cedar.”
Karen Bolton, Head of Community and Events Fundraising, said: “We’re delighted that Cedar has chosen Mind as its charity of the year. Not only will their support over the course of this partnership allow us to continue to be there for people who need it, when they need it the most, it can also help break down the stigma around mental health in the workplace. Every penny raised will help us provide vital support for people with mental health problems, including the Mind Infoline, our advice services and the campaigning Mind does to secure a better deal for the one in four of us who experience a mental health problem every year.”
To kick-start fundraising, Cedar will run an event every day during Mental Health Awareness Week, including an in-house “Bake-Off” and a Mastermind style quiz as a finale on the Friday 18th May. Plans for a corporate triathlon / 10km run are also in the pipeline while, in July, Director Graham Thornton will take part in the RideLondon Surrey-100 to fundraise on behalf of Mind.
We’ll be sharing more details of our plans as the year progresses but, in the meantime, if you’d like to sponsor Graham please visit his JustGiving page and pledge your support.