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Ribbon for Travel initiative aims to support mental health

A series of online events is taking place all this week to help raise awareness of mental health in the travel industry.

The Ribbon for Travel initiative, the brainchild of travel industry stakeholders, is running online sessions to help address some of the challenges those working in the industry are facing.

Riaan van Schoor, chief executive of agent data firm Agentivity, said the idea came about after a conversation with Bex Deadman from Blue Cube Travel when they spoke about mental health.

“When I put the phone down, I just said I should do something about this,” he said.

“We started reaching out to some individuals about taking part and to be perfectly honest we had to turn the taps off after all because the sessions got too full. People are just so willing to give their time.”

The week’s events began on Monday with a welcome coffee session over Zoom, while Tuesday’s sessions were held on LinkedIn on the themes of ‘Moving out of the travel industry’ and ‘Navigating the VUCA [volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity] world’.

The rest of the week will see more Zoom open coffee sessions, as well as events on ‘How – and why – to live in connection’ and ‘Management is also human’.

So far, the sessions have been interactive and have been recorded for people to watch back later.

Going forward, van Schoor said he plans to consider running more events and creating resources. “A key thing for us will be to make sure there’s some resources for people to go,” he said.

“There are things mentioned on the session we just had, which I think are also good things to add; podcasts that people found useful, books that people read that [they] found useful. I think it’ll be a good place on the website to expand on that.”

Find out more about Ribbon for Travel at: ribbonfortravel.com

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