Tag: Haseltine Lake

The Great Outdoors

Jonathan loved to be outdoors and was particularly pleased to have completed the Coast to Coast Walk with his best friend Chris at the end of their time in Durham. Quite an achievement when carrying all the gear and camping every night! They look pretty happy in the picture – tired but relaxed. It’s sometimes hard to keep the exercise going when you’re really busy and there just seems so much to do. However, it’s recognized that exercise improves mood and a sense of well-being. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/mental-benefits-of-exercise/#how-exercise-helps-your-mental-

Also take a look here 

In recent weeks, people have been out and about training for sponsored events. David, Sarah, Oliver (3) and Joshua (11 months) successfully completed the Blenheim 5 mile run. It is true that some of the party needed to take time out in the running buggy.

A group from Haseltine Lake and other supporters have entered the Bristol 10km and Chloe is training very hard for the Iron Man Triathlon in Bolton on July 14th. Good luck to you all!

A personal reflection on mental health first aid training

One of Jonathan’s colleagues, David Hammond, writes about his experiences of Mental Health First Aid Training.

“It’s a funny old thing, mental health.  We all have mental health – it’s just that some of us have better mental health than others.  Poor mental health can creep up on us unexpectedly, in ourselves or our colleagues, friends and families.  It doesn’t always knock on the door to announce its arrival, and there may not be a single trigger that you can point to and say “that caused my mental health to decline”.

For me, I can point to one event that caused me to struggle mentally.  It was losing Jonathan.  Not only was he a colleague at Haseltine Lake, but a good friend, and I tormented myself for months with the “how”, “why”, “what if”.  I was supposed to be his friend, and I felt like I’d failed him.  How could I not have not seen this coming?  Why didn’t I spend the time to see how he was doing, and go for that beer we’d been talking about for so long?  What if I’d messaged him a few days before he died to tell him some exciting personal news, rather than waiting to tell him in person?  All of these futile thoughts, and the frustration of knowing I’ll never have satisfactory answers, led to most of last year passing me by in a foggy blur.

The one thing that I did resolve to do was to make sure that I did everything in my power to try and stop this happening to anybody else.  Not on my watch.  Not to anybody I care about.  I jumped at the chance to become one of the firm’s Mental Health First Aiders (we now have 24, across all offices) and willingly attended the two day course run by MHFA England.

Two accredited trainers came to our offices, and delivered an incredible course that not only equipped me with the skills and knowledge to look out for others, but set me on the path to improving my own mental health.  One of the things they taught us was that if we’re in a bad place ourselves, we can’t help others.  Knowing that MHFA England devised the course content and trained the trainers gives you real confidence that what you are being taught can and will make a difference.

Being a Mental Health First Aider isn’t about diagnosing a particular mental health condition in someone – we leave that to the professionals.  What we have been trained to do is to spot the warning signs, and then to know what to say and do.   Quite often it is just a case of sitting and listening – giving someone a safe place where they can unload in confidence is sometimes all they need to start feeling better about things.  We never tell someone what to do, but we are there to talk through what resources and services might be of help.

As a firm, and particularly as a group of MHFAs within the firm, we are committed to looking out for our colleagues and being there to provide support and advice when needed.  Mental health is so very often still overlooked as a workplace issue, and the more that employers can do to rectify this the better.    We have our own internal wellbeing campaign, HL Well, with a particular focus on mental wellbeing.

IP Inclusive is proving invaluable in spreading the word in the IP profession: improving mental health support is key to creating a more inclusive working environment.    From a recent survey of IP practitioners, those struggling with their mental health still find it incredibly hard to admit as much to their employer or peers, for fear of being seen as “weak”, or “not up to the job”.  It’s not a sign of weakness.  It’s ok to not be ok.

While IP Inclusive is amongst those leading the charge, the stigma surrounding poor mental health still pervades through many other professions.  All of us, regardless of our profession, have a collective responsibility to ourselves, our colleagues, and our friends and family, to break down the stigma and create a workplace in which mental health can be freely discussed. Having an employer-led focus on mental health in the workplace would go a long way to breaking down the stigma, whether it is an internal program such as our HL Well, or formal training from MHFA England to create a workplace team of Mental Health Champions and/or Mental Health First Aiders.

Jonathan’s death will stay with me forever. But, becoming a Mental Health First Aider has helped me make some sense of it all, and left me feeling better in myself and more importantly better equipped to be there for others.

As I write, the MHFAs at Haseltine Lake are busy planning for the future, preparing our own Mission Statement and collating resources on a range of mental health issues.

Fundamentally though, we’re focussed on the human interactions that can help so much.  It doesn’t take two minutes to check on a colleague or friend and ask how he or she is doing, but it could change their view of the world, and of their workplace, to know that someone cares and is there to listen.”

David Hammond, Haseltine Lake LLP

Thank you for sharing this informative and powerful reflection.

Volunteers from Haseltine Lake get their hands dirty!

Be Active”, “Give”, “Learn” are three of the ways to Mental Wellbeing.

During Jonathan’s birthday week last September, the volunteers from Haseltine Lake hit all three! They worked on community farms in Bristol and London. Jonathan would have loved this – a great project in the fresh air. The day concluded with a celebrity cake in honour of his birthday. What a wonderful thing to do – Jonathan loved birthday cake! Thanks to everyone for such a fitting commemorative gesture.

Read more about the day

Some time ago as a commemorative activity we decided we were going to create some volunteering activities around Jonathan’s birthday week. We wanted to do something that honoured and remembered Jonathan’s big heart and personality. What better way to do this than taking a step back from the office, get some fresh air and put our best efforts into something different for a day.

We opted for volunteer days over two city farms.  Both of which were eager to have us, as our help would enable the Farms to do major improvement works which otherwise would not be financially or practically viable.

In Bristol we visited Windmill Hill City Farm and in London it was Stepney City Farm. Both of which are community projects that are welcoming, offering a green and quite unique space in city centres as a place to escape. Our volunteers got involved in team tasks such as painting the stables to make way for new farm animals, helping make raised beds for new garden areas, sowing seeds, planting bulbs and generally cleaning these areas up for all who visit the community farms.

These activities couldn’t have been further away from our normal day-to-day work lives and provided a mini-get-away from emails, patents and meetings. We worked hard on the day and got quite a different sense of accomplishment in our team building activities. After a sunny afternoon of manual labour for a great cause we got stuck into some celebratory cake.

Not only did the community farms really appreciate our time and effort, but all those involved gave positive feedback and enthusiasm to do it again.

It’s safe to say that we don’t mind getting our hands dirty and would love to keep this going on an annual basis, never forgetting the celebratory cake in honour of Jonathan’s Birthday.

Haseltine Lake complete the Bristol 10K

Congratulations to the Haseltine Lake team who completed the Bristol 10k on a very hot day. HL entered as part of the Business Challenge, in which the best times from our two teams were compared against those of around 70 other teams representing local companies for the chance to be crowned Bristol Business Challenge Champions.

A big thank you to all those who took part to raise money for Jonathan’s Voice and congratulations to the two HL teams one of whom finished as runner up, and the other which finished 7th!

In addition, they raised an amazing £1645 for Jonathan’s Voice!  If you’d like to donate, you can still do so here at our JustGiving page

Haseltine Lake Team to run the Bristol 10K

On Sunday 13 May 2018, staff from the Bristol office of Haseltine Lake, where Jonathan was a partner, will be taking part in the Simplyhealth Great Bristol 10k running event.

Some of the more experienced runners will be attempting to beat their personal best times, while others will be taking part in their first running event, having started running this year just for this event!

The runners are raising awareness and money for Jonathan’s Voice through sponsorship. You can click here to sponsor them.

Jonathan’s Obituary in April CIPA Journal

This month’s Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA) Journal publishes an obituary to Jonathan – thanks to Lesley Evans and Phil Davies from Haseltine Lake for the writing. You can read it here. And we look forward to working with IP inclusive on mental well being at work.

Don’t forget if you’re a CIPA or CITMA member, LawCare (www.lawcare.org.uk) provides support and information about mental health, free via its confidential helpline, 0800 279 6888 (Mon-Fri 9am – 7.30pm, weekends and bank holidays 10am – 4pm).