Welcome to our October 2021 newsletter.

A reminder to Chaplains and volunteer counsellors that we have a Connect and Chat call on Tuesday 5th October (link shown below).

Our Prayer Diary can be found on our website here.

In this months newsletter:


Humans and Resilience

By Alastair Reid, CWC
Apparently September has been one of the warmest since records began, thank goodness after a disappointing August. Now we’re dealing with the stark complications caused by political dogma and intransigence in dealing with, among other issues, the supply chain.

I spoke about pressure and stress last time, pressure and stress are part of the human condition. Where these cause issues are where we don’t have the available resources to enable us to cope.

There is no doubt that the pandemic has caused /revealed mental health issues in an unusually stark way. Thank goodness we, as a culture, are beginning to be more comfortable in talking about this, I say beginning advisedly, as we have millennia of prejudicial attitudes to overcome.

Humanity is essentially a resilient and creative species, a species that wouldn’t be populating the planet otherwise. Homo Sapiens have evolved over millions of years, adjusting with the planet as it evolved, working out the best ways of surviving on a day to day basis. It could be argued that the rate of change has accelerated during the last two hundred years or so, however, this outline form of change shouldn’t be confused with evolution. Perhaps a better word might be development - this development being very location specific.

We may be developed in many ways, however, humanity is relatively undeveloped when considering its response ability to some events, especially when these are threatening, especially life/species threatening. The essential life preserving response mechanisms are, for want of a better word, basic and  are dependent for effectiveness on many factors, such as needing good physical and mental health and needing resilience.

In the developed state which I’ve tried to describe, humanity has needed other response mechanisms, the pandemic has exposed/highlighted mental health issues and consequences. Recognising and learning how to create resilience has only recently started to be discussed. It is important the two are not confused.

How does this translate into our work supporting the Workplace? It’s important we recognise and understand the difficulties and consequences that have and are being experienced and how and where we can be most effective.

We’re in direct contact with employees, employers and the self employed. We hear their concerns, we hear about when they can’t cope, we hear about when they collapse as a result of the pressures they have experienced. Fortunately, due to this more open culture, more personal accounts and honesty about health - much more than in the recent past where most of this would never have been admitted. Progress has been made but there is still a long way to go to change mindsets.

CWC's body of knowledge enables us to engage with the emerging challenges of, for example, employers and hybrid working. We constantly seek to find ways of engaging with and helping our significant numbers of self employed. Our Workplace Wellbeing Hub has been a universal hit with whoever has seen it, we can all help in actively promoting this.

Our chaplains continue to give the care and compassion needed, sometimes at great emotional cost to themselves. They have been and continue to be under significant pressure, for which they have our total support.

There are interesting times ahead, the workplace could be better for many, work life balance should be encouraged to be more balanced, organisations will I’m sure see the overall benefits, but vigilance about mental health is very important.  
Alastair Ure Reid, Chair CWC

CWC join Healthy Workplaces Network

PLUS: find out about the Workplace Wellbeing Week!

CWC has recently joined a network of health and wellbeing organisations and employers to share ideas and promote complementary services that help the county's employers and employees.

Led by Everyone Health and Commission by the Combined Authority, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Healthy Workplace Service works with local employers to support their employers to make small lifestyle changes. These small changes to how we live can have a big impact on our health and wellbeing.

We know that people are our greatest asset and now more than ever we need to support our employees to be the very best versions of themselves. In return we know that healthier workplaces are more productive, have less sickness absence, save money and are more profitable.

Workplace Wellbeing Week 11-15 Oct
The network have pulled together to form a week focusing on workplace wellbeing and CWC have joined in with this week. A range of talks will take place throughout the week covering mental health, exercise, better sleep, becoming a disability confident employer, Living Sport, Be Smokefree, Drink & Drug Aware Zone and more.

CWC will be running a session about our workplace wellbeing hub and the role of workplace chaplains

Read more and register here 

Bite-size videos:
Understanding Mental Health & Wellbeing
Coping with Stress
Creating a Wellbeing Plan

The Workplace Wellbeing Hub offers a range of resources. Have you looked at our short videos provided to CWC by CPSL Mind?

These short videos give you straghtforward advice and practical tips to give you space to think, reflect and consider your own wellbeing and stress factors. You're not alone - we all face times when life is stressful and challenging, learn how to support yourself and remember to think about this regularly - wellbeing is a constant need that has to be nurtured.

Whatever your need we have something for mind, body and soul. 

CWC has funded the website alongside a grant from Peterborough City Council and has also funded specific resources supplied by local mental health organisation, CPSL Mind.

Interesting reads...
Taken from our Workplace Wellbeing Hub

I have 'pandemic brain' will I ever be able to work again? When lockdown hit, many of us became distracted, unfocused – and overwhelmed. But there are ways to recover and learn from the experience.

Spiritual wellbeing at work: how to do it right
Today, more people are finding inspiration and fulfilment in their jobs by bringing their spirituality into the workplace. The nature and meaning of work are undergoing a profound evolution. And the emergence of spirituality in the workplace points to the desire that there be more to work than just survival. We yearn for work to be a place in which we both experience and express our deep soul and spirit.

Work Happy: Physical Wellbeing in the Workplace
what can employers be doing to improve their employee physical wellbeing offering? What routes and methods can they apply to ensure employees are able to better their physical and mental health at work? And what can employees personally do to live a more active life in a largely sedentary working world? This article gathers together the latest thinking from experts and looks at some great examples employers and managers can learn from.

Mind: 5 Ways to Wellbeing. Learn all about how to nuture your wellbeing and learn how to Connect, Be Active, Take Notice, Learn and Give

The third way: Is it time to discover the benefits of coworking?
Work from home, or go back to the office? This is not an either/or question! The gradual end of lockdown presents us with new choices to consider, which offer new possibilities just when we’re most hungry for them. Having been denied choices about so many things for a long time, it’s important to embrace the options before us, and think hard about the future we want, for our lives and our work.

How can nature benefit my mental health?
Spending time in green space or bringing nature into your everyday life can benefit both your mental and physical wellbeing. For example, doing things like growing food or flowers, exercising outdoors or being around animals can have lots of positive effects. Be inspired with these tips.

Online seminars and workshops:

Wellbeing topics, reflection, chaplaincy and more...

Here is a selection of online events coming up which may interest supporters and Chaplains alike covering a range of topics relevant to work, spirituality and more.

Free Online Breathwork Class.
Every Wednesday 6pm-6:30pm online, free to attend

Unlock the benefits of Joy of Breathing. Awaken a conscious connection with your body, mind, heart and spirit.
Experience the powerful benefits of the Joy of Breathing transformational breathwork. The breathing technique works to quickly and effectively allow you to access a deeper, more conscious connection with the body, mind, heart and spirit.

SEND & Mental Health - "It's not just their autism!"
Mon, October 18, 2021, 10:00 AM – 12:00 PM Online

It can be hard when your child is anxious or experiencing mental health issues to get the right help, especially if they have a diagnosis of autism or ADHD. Jo Keys is back with us to help us identify when to get the mental health support when our SEND child needs it.

Agile and Hybrid: the right to flexible working
26th October, 4:30-6pm £25

COVID-19 has had a profound impact on the workplace. What does agile and hybrid working mean in your organisation? have you changed the way you manage flexible working requests? has the legal advice changed in this area of employment law? The COVID-19 pandemic has fundamentally changed the way we think about work and the workplace, shifting expectations of what is possible for both employers and employees. Find out the latest hot from the legal press, share how your organisation has changed and hear from other HR professionals. Knowledgesharing and yes, there will be CAKE!

What is Mindfulness? Buddhist Roots of a Modern Movement 
14th October (£17 to attend)

This two-hour talk will cover the fascinating roots of mindfulness. Mindfulness is used widely in the world today. But, how did these practices come about? Mindfulness is useful everywhere, so the Buddha said. Using Early Buddhist Texts, this session will focus on the Buddhist foundations of Mindfulness. 

Workshop Cambridge [Live]: Understanding & Treating Trauma & PTSD
£50-£105 3rd Nov or 4th Dec in person or may possibly move to online due to Covid restrictions
People’s reactions to traumatic events range from mild distress to severe disruptions that make it difficult or impossible to function. This course provides an indepth understanding into the brain science of trauma and the effective recovery tips

End of Life Across the Faiths
6th December, Arthur Rank Hospice Charity

Supporting your patient’s faith and beliefs at end of life helps to make a more dignified experience. This Study Day is aimed at: health and social care professionals who are caring for palliative patients in any setting, community, hospital, care or nursing home.
  • The Peterborough Theological Society is an ecumenical society, open to all.
  • Meetings are held on Mondays, 7.30 – 9.15 pm.
  • Meetings in person will resume as soon as possible and will also be available on Zoom.
  • Subscriptions: Annual - £20 (couples £30; unwaged students £10); Individual meetings - £5.
  • Register to receive details. Contact to register and make payment.
Upcoming lectures for the autumn:

Monday, 25 October 2021
Food and farming - obedient to power or Gospel?
Speaker: Christopher Jones MBE, Co-founder of the Farming Community Network

Monday, 29 November 2021
The Narrative of Experience: belief, faith and what happens

Speaker: Rev’d John Rackley, Associate Minister for Market Harborough Methodist Circuit 

CWC Listening service
A service where anyone can reach a Chaplain, regardless of any faiths or beliefs.
If you need emotional support please don't be afraid to use our email request service.

Send an email to and we will put you in touch with one of our experienced, qualified volunteers.
Thank you to all those volunteering their time to CWC.


Connect and Chat
Drop in session
Tuesday 5th October 7pm 2021

All are welcome to join our informal drop-in session for workplace chaplains, volunteer chaplains and counsellors. Come and offload, see some friendly faces and share experiences. Session runs every 1st Tuesday of the month.

Jane Thompson is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Connect and Chat - drop in session for Chaplains
Time: Oct 5, 2021 07:00 PM London
Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 826 4530 0452
Passcode: 558136

'As a Chaplain you are often working alone in challenging circumstances and seeking to walk alongside those at their most vulnerable.  It has been a real comfort for me to have the opportunity to have a supportive space to share freely of the experience and to be refreshed in the knowledge that we are not alone in this vital ministry.'

'It was good to hear from others who are involved in workplace chaplaincy in different contexts. I felt there was a mutual exchange of creative ideas and lots of support offered which I pray will bear much fruit.'

Community Trauma: Remaining resilient in a time of pandemic

NEXT Workplace Chaplaincy Mission UK Mini-Conference will take place on 7th October 2021 at 3:00pm – 4:30pm.
Keynote Speaker: Revd Hilary Ison, Trainer and Consultant on Trauma, Leadership and Change.


The session will be led by Revd Hilary Ison, trainer and consultant on trauma, leadership and change. Hilary has worked in parish and sector ministry and trained in Organisational Consultancy and Systems Leadership. She is interested in building resilience in congregations and individuals, looking at how better to prepare ministers to cope with tragedy and trauma in congregations. This has resulted in the development of resources and delivery of training days during this Covid pandemic, providing on-line workshops for those in ministry.

The main session will last 90 minutes, but the Zoom room will be open from 14:45 and will remain open after the end of the mini conference to provide an opportunity for networking with workplace chaplains from other parts of the country.

This event is open to all members of WCM UK, whether they are individual members, or part of a workplace chaplaincy team (NOTE CWC has group membership for chaplains part of CWC) and is FREE to attend, though a small donation would be welcomed to cover administrative costs and support this and future events. 

To book click the button below for the event page:
Register for Community Trauma WCM conference

Bursary Scheme - next deadline 30th Nov

Reminder that our new Bursary Scheme is open to workplace chaplains operating in Cambridgeshire. 

The purpose of the Fund is to provide financial support to chaplains who are seeking to attend a conference, training course or retreat that will enhance their ministry as workplace chaplains.

Grants of up to £500 are available for each successful application. No requests for bursaries to cover accommodation expenses, where these are in addition to the course or retreat fees, will be considered. For more information and an application form please see our website here.
Multifaith Prayer Diary - October 2021
Download our prayer diary to give focus to each day. Featuring different faith festivals, national awareness days and thoughtful prayers.
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