Belong and Grow Week 2021: Made for Learning

The T&OD team are happy to share the first details for our upcoming Belong and Grow week, which will be coinciding with Learning at Work week, running 17th-21st May.

Like last year, to ensure safety, we will be taking a virtual approach to BAG week, and the main aim is to encourage you to take time during the week for your personal development and wellbeing (we hope to be back to face to face sessions and a full timetable in 2022!)

Each day we will have a theme, and share resources via our Teams Channel, such as blogs, internal staff pages and Ted talks that tie in to the theme of the day, and promote learning.

We will also be hosting the following virtual sessions during the week that are open to all staff:

Tuesday 18th May:

  • Creative Writing, Facilitated by Steve Cope, 11am-12noon (bookable via Staff Connect)

Creativity is not the exclusive zone of the privileged few. We can all write. We do it every day. This event uses structured activities to encourage you to free your imagination. The aim is to help you enjoy the creative writing process. The session is for anyone who enjoys writing, regardless of ability and experience.

  • Apprentice Information Session, Facilitated by Loretta Izod, 10am-11am (bookable via Staff Connect)

As of 1/04/2021 to 30/09/2021 employers can claim the incentive of £3000 for any age Apprentice. If they are aged 16-24 an additional £1000 can be claimed. This is open for all new employees employed as an Apprentice. Loretta will be hosting an information session on how to:

  • Recruit an Apprentice to your team​
  • Use the incentives to support your Apprentice​
  • Develop an existing employee / team member using Apprenticeships ​

Thursday 20th May:

Would you like to learn how to recognise the signs of domestic abuse and how to support your colleagues or friends who are affected by domestic abuse? It can be difficult to know what to do when someone tells you they are experiencing domestic abuse, or how to ask questions, if you suspect people want to talk. People from all walks of life are affected by domestic abuse, so you have the confidence and knowledge to talk about abuse and where someone can seek help will make all the difference!

The training will cover:

  • The definition and dynamics of domestic abuse
  • How it impacts survivors’ lives
  • The barriers to seeking help
  • How to respond if a survivor discloses abuse
  • How to seek ongoing support

Friday 21st May:

  • Writing for Wellbeing, Facilitated by Steve Cope, 11am-12noon (bookable via Staff Connect)

The Writing for Wellbeing session provides a loosely structured framework which enables you to identify and express positive reflections of your health and happiness. By drawing on your unique experience, you will create short, written narratives about the things in life that you most enjoy.  Suitable for all.

All Week:

  • Coffee with a Mystery colleague, building on the successful initiative, Kent Colleagues Connect

Coffee with a mystery colleague provides opportunities for informal meetings between all colleagues across the university, either in an academic or a professional service capacity.

What? This gives staff the opportunity to virtually meet a colleague that they may not normally get the chance to network with, as you will randomly be matched with a “mystery colleague”.

Who? This scheme is open to all staff across the University!

When? During BAG week, we will notify you of who you have been matched with, and then it’s up to you to pick a date and time to get to know someone new over a virtual coffee break.

Where? Teams

How? All you need to do is email by the start of BAG Week (17th May), letting us know your name, role and email address, and we will then randomly match you with a colleague.

We are also hoping to offer the opportunity to hear an external speaker discuss the topic of Gender Equality and the impact of the pandemic on it – further information will follow when available.

If you want further information, or would like to be added to our Teams Channel, please email the team: