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News And Views

News & Views

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  • 28 January 2020
  • Rachel Jones

Monkeys walk for mental health

As we enter this new decade, speaking out about our mental health is definitely becoming easier rather than something hidden in the shadows or swept under the carpet. Thanks to the high profile given to people’s struggles, as a society we are more aware that we need to help and accommodate those with mental health issues, with dedicated charities and workplace support being set up, and importantly – more available.

It’s a topic close to our hearts. Two years ago we devised our ‘Be Kind To Your Mind’ staff programme which has now been adopted by Zeno offices around the world, and we continue to expand our work with UK pro bono charity partner, The Mental Health Foundation.

Fast forward to 17 January 2020.

It marked Year 2 of Zeno Gives Back—an event that encourages Zeno staff around the world spend part (or all) of their day donating time, knowledge and skills to organisations in their communities that need help. ZGB was created in response to an employee survey that found our team members wanted to see the agency doing more to support the communities where we live and work.

Like most big ideas, Year 1 was viewed as experimental—a test to see if people were truly “into” the idea and able to make an impact. We saw enough positive feedback from staff and clients to green light the programme again in 2020, and asked people to take it to the next level.

And in true fashion, to the next level it went. And beyond.

Two weeks ago, all the monkeys (and a few dogs) put on their walking boots and set off from Teddington Lock to embark on a 15 mile trek, following the winding path along the River Thames to Battersea Park. Luckily, we had the sun shining down on us. None of us knew what to expect - indeed some of us had never been to South London or heard of Teddington! Walking along the river, we saw seal, herring and parakeets - nature at its finest. Looking at the architecture of Ham House, Star and Garter and Syon House, I remember thinking, wow London really does have so many beautiful, unspoilt places. Four and a half hours later WE HAD DONE IT!

32,000 steps, 15 miles, an average of 3,600 calories burned per person, and raised an impressive £1,700 for The Mental Health Foundation. We may have visited a couple of pubs too…

A big thank you to our families, clients and friends who helped us achieve our goal.

To find out more about what other Zeno offices did globally, read more here

Bring on Zeno Gives Back 2021!