Prince William opens up about ‘all the pain’ he witnessed
‘You see sad things… I took a lot home without realising it’: Prince William opens up about ‘all the pain’ he witnessed as an air ambulance pilot
Prince revealed the troubling aspects of his work at East Anglian Air Ambulance
He said witnessing despair, sadness, and injury can take a toll on an individual
It comes as the duke launched an initiative to improve workplace well-being
The Duke of Cambridge has opened up about ‘all the pain’ he witnessed as an air ambulance pilot – as he launched an initiative to improve workplace well-being.
Prince William travelled to the Engine Shed, a community work-hub in Bristol, to launch his Mental Health at Work project.
At the event, he took the opportunity to speak out about his experience as an air ambulance pilot.
‘You’re just seeing all the sad things, all the pain every day,’ he told senior paramedic Dawn Anderson, who has recovered from post traumatic stress disorder with help from her employer.
The second-in-line to the throne chatted to Ms Anderson and others who have recorded videos talking about their experiences of workplace mental health to promote his new project.
He said of his time with the East Anglian Air Ambulance: ‘I took a lot home without realising it.’
‘If you see sad things every day, you think all life is like that, you’re just seeing all the sad things, all the pain every day.
‘I think that for the medical community, particularly, must weigh a lot on their minds.
‘That you’re always dealing with despair, sadness, injury, things that are really quite troubling.
‘The attrition builds up and you don’t really have the opportunity to off-load it.’
The Mental Health at Work project is an online gateway aimed at providing resources, training and information for managers to support their staff.
The website was created by the duke’s mental health campaign Heads Together and the charity Mind which has released the findings of a major study into workplace wellbeing.
It found almost half of the 44,000 workers questioned had experienced poor mental health in their current job.
The survey also revealed only half of those who had experienced poor mental health had talked to their employer about the issue, suggesting as many as one in four are struggling in silence with problems such as anxiety, low mood and stress.
In a speech to launch the portal which went live on Tuesday, Prince William said: ‘If you are a business owner, a team leader, a line manager, you work in HR, or just believe in supporting the wellbeing of your colleagues – Mental Health At Work can help.’
The prince said he wanted the gateway to be a ‘big shift in working culture’ and ensure that dealing with mental health is a part of the everyday working life.
During the event, the duke visited workshops demonstrating the gateway and met people trying out the new system.
Ms Anderson, who works for East of England Ambulance Service based in Whitham, Essex, said: ‘I’ve always held the belief that everybody is susceptible to mental health problems and I wouldn’t expect even a member of the royal family to be exempt from that.
‘To hear him admit that just goes to prove how good it is to speak about these things and how positive that can be.
‘And it goes towards removing that stigma about mental health and to speaking up to and owning up to it.’
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