RK offers the region’s most diverse array of construction, manufacturing and service solutions for construction, industrial and commercial clients. With around 2,000 employees, RK prides itself on quality, safety and putting people first.
In recent years, the company has focused more attention on the wellness of its employees, with a strong emphasis on mental health and suicide prevention. According to the Center for Disease Control, individuals working in construction have one of the highest rates of suicide amongst all industries. Inspired to address this critical issue, RK is making mental health a top priority for its employees.
“RK is doing its best to get in front of today’s alarming statistics. We are focused on sustaining mental health and preventing suicide instead of merely reacting to it,” said Russ Sullivan, manager of learning and development at RK.
In its quest for more resources, information, and programs, RK reached out to the CU Helen and Arthur E. Johnson Depression Center (JDC). Their collaboration enables RK to train its managers, and also provide train-the-trainer opportunities, to help employees with mental health issues and suicide prevention.
This month, several RK employees will be trained as trainers through Working Minds, a suicide prevention training program specifically designed for the workplace. This will allow the company to provide in-house trainings, conducted by their own managers, for their large employee base, generating a higher awareness level about mental health, as well as more openness around seeking help and helping others.
To keep the conversation going, the JDC will conduct follow-up trainings addressing other ongoing mental health concerns.
“The Working Minds training program will give our workforce more internal and external resources to support them if they are in mental distress, or are contemplating suicide,” said Sullivan. “Our employees are the source of our success. If we don’t help our employees during their challenging times, we will not be successful. Our investment in employees’ mental health is part of the RK Experience – our term for putting people first.”
The JDC offers a variety of programs and trainings for organizations regarding mental wellness and suicide prevention, either free of charge or at a low cost.
“We hope that other organizations, like RK, will see the priceless benefit of providing education and resources that boost awareness, expand understanding and create the potential to save lives,” said Alex Yannacone, CU Johnson Depression Center’s community programs manager.