New Hope Group recognised for putting people first

21 August 2017

New Hope Group has cemented its reputation as an employer of choice with two of its biggest operations named joint winners of the Health Program Award at the Queensland Mining Industry Health and Safety Conference.

New Acland Mine and Jeebropilly Mine were recognised for successfully improving the health and wellness of their employees with the Live Well, Work Well program.

The holistic health program, a joint initiative between New Hope and allied health specialists Live Well Australia, makes a range of health professionals available to workers including general practitioners, physiotherapists, psychologists, dieticians and occupational therapists.

Senior Health and Safety Systems Coordinator Stewart Sherrington said New Hope had recognised being safe at work meant people needed to be healthy in mind, body and soul.

"In 2013 New Acland embarked on a journey to educate and empower our workforce to take their health into their own hands," Stewart said.

"With the help of Live Well Australia, we were able to provide our people with intervention and support from industry professionals.

"New Acland Mine is in its fourth year of the program and I can confidently say it’s completely reshaped our health culture on site.

"Some changes are visible like exercise equipment in crib huts and stretching sessions at pre-start meetings, but other changes are more subtle like employees bringing healthier food to work and choosing to stand during breaks instead of sitting down to eat."

Health Safety and Training Coordinator Brendan Ryan said Jeebropilly Mine had also seen major success with the program since its adoption in 2015, especially in encouraging the predominately male workforce to begin speaking openly about their health concerns.

"From the get go this program has been in the hands of our workforce," Brendan said.

"They’ve set the direction and the content for the program and that sense of ownership means it’s had real buy-in from our workers.

"Live Well, Work Well has encouraged people to stand up and start talking about their health and in doing so our crews have built their own support networks to help them on their health journey."

"The program has given our crews the confidence to start talking to their doctors about their concerns and through that process we’ve had a number of people discover health conditions they otherwise wouldn’t have known about or gotten treatment for."

"For that reason, this program hasn’t just changed lives, it’s saved lives."

After the original success at New Acland and now Jeebropilly, the Live Well, Work Well program has also been rolled out at the company’s Corporate Head Office in Ipswich and Queensland Bulk Handling at the Port of Brisbane.