A new initiative has been launched by brand ambassador and former bartender Tim Etherington-Judge to help hospitality professionals lead healthier lives.
Healthy Hospo is a not-for-profit social enterprise with an objective “to build a healthier, happier, more productive hospitality industry”. The multi-faceted project incorporates a website, events and consultancy services, created for hospitality professionals around the world.
It is led by Tim (pictured) who conceived the idea after recovering from a mental breakdown last year. He has worked in the industry for over 20 years, initially as a bartender and most recently as global brand ambassador for Bulleit whiskey.
For Healthy Hospo, he has brought together a collective of hospitality professionals including former bartenders, global brand ambassadors and experts in the fields of mental health, nutrition, personal fitness, yoga and pilates.
The website will provide free-to-use information, advice and support alongside events including practical workshops and seminars on health and wellness and a consultancy that will work with employers to improve health in the workplace.
The website has been launched this week at healthyhospo.com and the first event is scheduled for January 15. Taking place at Core Clapton in London, it will be a day-long workshop offering a mixture of Ted Talks-style seminars and practical classes in health, fitness and mindfulness.
The workshop is open to all professionals in the hospitality industry, not just the bar trade. Tickets can be reserved on the Healthy Hospo website.
Tim said: “In 2016 I had a very personally traumatic time but I wanted to take this experience and turn it into something positive.
“Healthy Hospo will seek to improve the health and wellness of hospitality professionals throughout the industry through preventative measures enabling them to lead healthier, happier working lives and build more sustainable careers.
“I also hope that by doing this we will also benefit business owners, helping them build a healthier workforce resulting in increased profitability, staff retention and reduced lost days to sickness.”
Research has found that the hospitality industry is one of the unhealthiest in the world but there are few organised industry unions supporting the rights and wellbeing of workers.
A study published in 2015 by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration in the US showed that the hospitality industry had the highest use of illegal drugs and ranked third highest in excessive alcohol consumption. Studies in Australia and the UK found similar patterns.
A 2015 study by the US Department of Labour Statistics found bartending the 13th most dangerous job in the US, with bartenders more likely to die on the job than police officers.