R U OK? Swinburne encourages checking in and checking out to revitalise and recharge

On R U OK? Day, Swinburne University of Technology’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Pascale Quester, shared a message with all Swinburne staff.

‘Swinburne is a strong supporter of R U OK? Day – a day that serves as an important reminder of the need to look after ourselves, and each other,’ says Professor Quester.

‘Checking in with family, friends and colleagues and offering support to assist mental wellbeing is what today is all about – and asking the simple question: “are you ok?”.’

‘This year, it is also important to take the time to check in with yourself and make sure that you are OK. Now is such a critical time to check in with yourself and with others.’

‘A range of information and resources is also available to you to support in you in this important conversation. We are here to help.’

Professor Quester also announced a range of measures to help Swinburne staff cope with the challenges of rolling lockdowns.

Swinburne’s Revitalise and Recharge program

  1. Swinburne Slowdown Week: From 13-19 September 2021 we are encouraging all leaders and teams to look for opportunities to cancel meetings that are not vital, take longer lunches, come together as teams for virtual events, and deprioritise non-essential work.
  2. Annual Leave Incentivisation scheme, allocating up to three days of Recharge Leave: From 13 September until 23 December 2021, for every three consecutive days of annual leave eligible employees take, Swinburne will give an additional day. This will be capped at nine days of annual leave providing three recharge days.
  3. Two Recharge days: Swinburne will also provide two additional leave days for all fixed term and continuing staff, to be taken on 1 November (Monday prior to Melbourne Cup) and 24 December (Christmas Eve). These days are designed around public holidays to provide an extended break
  4. Gift for staff: We have teamed up with our friends at Hawthorn Hotel to give all fixed term, continuing, sessional and casual staff a thank you gift voucher. We hope that many of you and your teams will be able to take advantage of this at the Hawthorn Hotel when we return to campus. An alternative gift will be organised if this voucher is not useable by you.

Commenting on the measures, Professor Quester encouraged all Swinburne staff to take full advantage of the program to look after their wellbeing.

‘While this may not remove all the challenges and pressures we are currently facing, we hope this program of measures, including up to an additional five days off, will be the boost we all need to power through the remainder of the year,’ says Professor Quester.

‘We have developed this program in the context of the broader sector challenges we are facing together. These additional benefits are focused on supporting your wellbeing. I encourage you to take full advantage of these benefits, to Revitalise and Recharge.’

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