We sat down (virtually) with Marni Johnson, SVP, Human Resources and Corporate Affairs at BlueShore Financial, to discuss why they generously supported this year’s Changemaker’s Market:
We are so fortunate that BlueShore Financial generously partnered with us again for this year’s Changemaker’s Market. Why did you decide to support this event that features over 200 movers and makers from small businesses and artists?
The Changemaker’s Market is an inspirational initiative that connects community, brings awareness to health and wellness, and highlights the exceptional women-led businesses we have here in BC. At BlueShore Financial, we are committed to supporting well-being in all its forms, including physical, community and financial. With the ongoing effects of COVID-19 having a detrimental impact on small business, and disproportionately so on women-led businesses, the Changemaker’s Market is an excellent opportunity to spotlight and support these entrepreneurs across our province.
Why does women’s health matter to you personally?
Healthy women are critical to our collective future – they are central to our families and communities, including BlueShore’s client and employee base. It’s therefore essential that we raise funds and awareness to support equitable access to healthcare and research.
Nearly four in ten women report their mental health has worsened since the beginning of the pandemic a year ago. How do you cope with stress related to the COVID-19 pandemic?
For me, spending time in nature and being active is such an easy and effective de-stressor. I rise early and walk for 45 minutes before logging onto my computer at home. This sets up my day well; it allows me to step away from the news, get fresh air and take some time to reflect on what I’m grateful for each day. At night I wind down by listening to an audiobook, usually fiction.
I also make time to do the things I love, including playing the flute with my husband and making artisan chocolates.
How does BlueShore Financial support their employees with their mental health?
BlueShore is committed to four pillars of wellness – mental, physical, social and financial. We offer employees a robust Employee and Family Assistance Program which includes complimentary, confidential, and expert counselling support. We also offer a “Keeping Well” benefit that employees can use toward supporting their well-being in a way that is meaningful to them, whether it’s a new pair of running shoes, a subscription to a meditation app, or a ski pass, for example. We also have an internal Wellness Committee who provides weekly ‘Wellness Wednesday’ updates to our staff such as resources, webinars and advice related to health and wellness.
Additionally, we recently set up a virtual Sun Run Team, to connect employees and support a virtual team activity during this time of physical distancing.
And finally, we encourage our employees to take breaks and take time off when needed, even if typical travel “vacations” cannot happen due to COVID-19.
What most inspires BlueShore Financial about giving back to the community?
One of BlueShore Financial’s core values is to enrich the communities where our employees and clients live, work and play. We support many organizations every year who empower our communities through wellness programs and initiatives. For me, personally, it is so fulfilling when we hear back from a donation recipient about how we helped make a tangible difference for their organization.