NWCH learns about ‘Jordan’s Conversation’ and mental health as part of International Stress Awareness Week

Off the back of National Stress Awareness Week, the Hub team had the privilege of being visited by Emma Dempster from NWCH Framework Partner Seddon, who delivered a frank, interesting and worthwhile session around mental health and their initiative, ‘Jordan’s Conversation’.

The session was an interactive conversation around the topic of mental health, focusing in particular on stress management and self-care and allowing us as a team discuss mental health. 

Background to Jordan’s Conversation 

Seddon set up the mental health initiative “Jordan’s Conversation” in partnership with registered charity, Mates in Mind (https://www.matesinmind.org/) approximately 18 months ago on the back of the tragic death of their colleague Jordan Bibby. It was designed to encourage conversation around mental health and raise awareness of recognising the signs and how to gain/give help.

Seddon has 15 volunteer ambassadors representing the initiative and has delivered over 60 talks to over 500 people, including clients, contractors and supply chain members.

It was the winner the most inspiring mental health initiative at the Inspire Awards.

To find out more about Jordan’s Initiative and to watch a truly inspiring video, please follow this link: https://seddon.co.uk/csr/jordans-conversation

What is mental health?

  • The way you think, feel & behave
  • Everyone has mental health 

Mental health stigma

  • Concerned people might see you as a failure 
  • People don’t like to admit it 
  • Negative perception
  • Lack of understanding 
  • Cant help others if you can’t help yourself 

Talking about mental health 

  • Ask if someone is ok.
  • Takes time for people to open up 
  • 1 in 4 people will experience mental health issues
  • 450 million people worldwide are affected by mental health issues 
  • 2 construction workers take their own life every day – highest of any industry 
  • Suicide within construction is 3.7 times higher than any other industry 

Why construction?

  • Long hours 
  • High pressures 
  • Day rate pay
  • lonely – working away from family 
  • 87% male orientated – men are not as forthcoming as women in talking/ opening up 
  • Men are 4 times more likely to become addicted to drugs or alcohol 
  • 75% of mental health starts before 18 years old
  • Suicide is the most common cause of death of men in 20-49 years in the UK
  • Social media is a common cause of mental health issues 

Stress management – what causes stress?

  • Tight deadlines 
  • Relationships 
  • Family / home life balance

Stress container 

  • Everyone has a stress container – everyone’s is different
  • Helpful coping strategies 
  • Unhelpful coping strategies 
  • When this overflows – stress signature 

What helpful things can you do to overcome stress?

  • Exercise 
  • Balanced Nutrition 
  • Relaxation
  • Sleep
  • Be mindful
  • Self-talk
  • Set goals
  • Work on your self esteem
  • Talk


  • Self-care isn’t selfish 
  • Give yourself regular breaks 
  • Practice one’s own well-being and happiness in particular during periods of stress
  • Take 30 mins at least 3 times a week 
  • Eat well
  • Keep Hydrated  
  • Socialise 

The conversation had proved eye opening for the team and will be being followed up with a training course which will allow members of the team to become ‘mental health first aiders’.

This session tied in with the below report which was published by the Construction Enquirer recently about late payments sparking a mental health crisis in the construction industry.

The NWCH insists on fair payment to the supply chain as we are aware of the impact it can have on supply chain partners and individuals within.

If any of the issues in this article affect you or anyone you know and you feel you/they need help, please try to follow the advice given above and in the image below courtesy of Mates in Mind, or speak to a mental health first aider.

Alternatively, you can contact the Samaritans who are available on the phone day or night and can be contacted via email, letter or in branch. Contact detils can be found at https://www.samaritans.org/how-we-can-help/contact-samaritan/

Remember, it’s ok not to be ok.

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