Inspire Workplaces hosted a dazzling awards ceremony on Thursday 20th June, to celebrate the importance of building positivity, resilience and mental wellbeing at work.

The event was organised to recognise the efforts made by many organisations that go the extra mile to safeguard and nurture the mental health and wellbeing of employees.

The awards ceremony, which is in its second year, took place in the Crowne Plaza Hotel and was hosted by legendary broadcaster Wendy Austin and special guest, GAA Legend Oisin McConville.

The Northern Ireland Civil Service was awarded with a special recognition award for its long-standing and ground-breaking commitment to employee wellbeing.

John Conaghan, Director of Professional Services at Inspire said:

“We are thrilled to have hosted these awards and acknowledge the organisations that are going above and beyond the call of duty to promote staff strength and wellbeing at work. The awards are a celebration of those workplaces across NI who are investing in the wellbeing of their staff. The award nominees came from all sectors from right across the region. They are a showcase of special places to work, where it really is ok not to be ok and wellbeing is the top of the agenda”

“We are especially pleased to award the Lifetime Achievement Award to the Northern Ireland Civil Service. NICS have been working in partnership with Inspire Workplaces for over 13 years and have shown an unwavering and, indeed increasing, commitment to the mental wellbeing of their staff team. With such a diverse workforce it is both important and impressive to see a strong commitment to employee wellbeing clearly and publically demonstrated from the very top of NICS and it was our genuine pleasure to present them with this well-deserved award.”

Speaking at the awards, Oisin McConville, who became a mental health champion following his gambling addiction said:

“As a person who suffered with addiction, I can’t stress enough the need for people to have somewhere to go where they can discuss their issues and feel like they have a safe place to get help. The workplace wellbeing awards are a fantastic opportunity to recognise those organisations who understand that it isn’t just a job, and they need to look out for the wellbeing of their staff in order to get the best out of them professionally.”

“When I was in the midst of my addiction, I didn’t feel like I could speak to anyone, and having that support system in my place of work may have meant that I could have got the help I needed faster. It is fantastic that this is changing and workplaces are now supporting their employees in their emotional wellbeing.”

The winners for each category were:

Excellence in Public Sector Workplace Wellbeing:

North West Regional College

Excellence in Large Private Sector Workplace Wellbeing:

Lagan Specialist Contracting Group

Excellence in Small Private Sector Workplace Wellbeing:

C3 Fitness

Excellence in Voluntary, Community or Social Enterprise Workplace Wellbeing:


Excellence in Local Government Workplace Wellbeing:

Police Service of Northern Ireland – Occupational Health and Wellbeing Team

Outstanding Employee Led Initiative

Queen’s University Belfast

Workplace Wellbeing Innovation Award

Joint Winners – Police Service of Northern Ireland and Northern Health and Social Care Trust Equality Unit

Promoting a Positive Wellbeing Culture

Police Federation for Northern Ireland

Highly Commended:

NI Water

Belfast Metropolitan College

Hughes Insurance

Outstanding Leadership:

Peter McBride

Lifetime Achievement Award

Northern Ireland Civil Service