Worker welfare, volunteering is vital in hospitality, says hotelier

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Commitments to worker welfare and community engagement are at the heart of the success of the Irish hospitality sector, says Aaron Mansworth, Managing Director of Trigon Hotels.

Trigon Hotels is offering all of its employees a paid charity day, announced to coincide with National Workplace Wellness Day, Friday, April 29. It is the only day in Europe devoted solely to the health and well-being of employees.

Trigon staff select a charity of their choice and work on a voluntary basis to organize events, raise funds and raise awareness for the local charity. Trigon operates the Cork International Hotel, the Metropole Hotel and the Cork Airport Hotel.

“Our industry is about people, the customers we serve and our teams,” says Mansworth. “Without our teams, we are nothing. We attach great importance to creating a good corporate culture. We strive to keep people engaged, we encourage their continued development in their careers.

“The health of our employees and their well-being are extremely important to us at Trigon Hotels. We also want to make a difference in our local community. Giving back and volunteering is extremely rewarding and benefits everyone.

Mr Mansworth said Irish hotels have always been keen to engage with local groups, sponsoring sports clubs and community organizations and hosting events for charity. The Paid Charity Day is a natural extension of this tradition.

Trigon Hotels has also partnered with the Cope Foundation to create a sensory garden in Montenotte, Cork. The garden, which is located on previously unused land adjacent to the Beech Hill Garden Centre, features features and plants that stimulate the senses through touch, sight, smell, taste and hearing.

Volunteers from Trigon Hotels and the Cope Foundation take care of the garden. Cope works to improve the lives of people with developmental disabilities and/or autism, by providing a range of person-centred services and supports.

In the sensory garden, raised beds have been built and have already been filled with herbs, plants and flowers. Other sensory elements will include new water features and more select vegetables and herbs with textures and flavors in mind.

“Our staff really enjoy working in the sensory garden,” says Mansworth. “We learned so much working there. It has a real wellness benefit for us.

“We recently held a charity event at the Cork International Hotel. One of the dishes included lettuce which we had picked the day before from the sensory garden.

“In hospitality, we tend to be people with a glass half full. Everyone has been hit hard by the pandemic. Volunteering boosts morale. It’s good for morale. »

Trigon Hotels has a wellness committee that meets monthly to develop ideas, initiatives and organize activities within its hotels. Cope Foundation and [email protected] are the hotel group‘s charity partner for 2021 and 2022.

Fostering an ethic of volunteerism is at the heart of Trigon’s corporate culture. It also improves Trigon’s ability to attract and retain talent.

The pandemic has raised significant staffing issues for many industries, including hospitality and retail. Promoting personal staff development and community engagement on a dual track is beneficial in terms of attracting and retaining staff.

It’s a corporate culture that people can identify with. The Trigon website highlights its various links between personal development and volunteering.

Trigon also has in-depth policies and charters designed to promote diversity and inclusion, equal employment opportunity for people with disabilities, access to training, career development guidance and a commitment to engage with communities.

Aaron Mansworth adds, “All of our time is valuable, especially when you’re juggling family and other commitments, which is why we want to make volunteering accessible to everyone on our team. Your time is one of the greatest gifts you can give and I hope the Paid Charity Day will encourage everyone on our team to get involved in a charity that is close to their hearts.

Kathleen Linehan, Strategic Director of Human Resources at Trigon, adds, “Volunteering and giving back to charity is a great way to keep employees motivated and happy. Our team members have wonderful skills and talents and we help by giving their time.

“The Cope Foundation is our charity of choice this year and I hope they benefit from this initiative. Over the past few months we have worked with the Cope Foundation and students from the Bonnington Training Center to develop a sensory garden.

“It was a fantastic experience for everyone involved – meeting new people, developing new skills and we all learned a lot from each other.”

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