A women’s network aspires to boost morale whilst concentrating on improving employee experience and confidence within the workplace.
This network will provide an open forum for our colleagues to share their experience of the workplace in a supportive and safe environment. The network will provide a ‘listening ear’ for our colleagues as well as seeking their views to help shape our inclusion agenda and enable us to focus our efforts on actions that will make the biggest and most positive difference.
When is the next Women's Staff Network session?
To be confirmed
The MS Teams invite will be sent out to the Womens Network members each month. Please complete the sign up form to join the network here.
Ann James, Chief Executive, University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust.
"As the Executive Champion, I am delighted to announce the launch of the Women’s Staff Network. Women’s networks are so important to me and I am very excited to take forward this network which is for women, about women and will focus on positive action to shape the workplace for all women working at University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust.
"Women make up 73% of the workforce at the Trust and of all the five staff networks the women’s group has the potential to draw a very high number of people and we would like to encourage women of all grades, roles and ages to join the Women’s Staff Network. The network has been set up for the benefit of its members offering a safe space to share experiences, seek and offer support and ideas and receive helpful information. Through participation in this dynamic group you will be able to create momentum for change and have a voice which helps shape the future. This is also an opportunity to celebrate what works well for you but also what issues affect you day to day. There has been lots of activity already from different groups in the community and I am positive this network will provide a valuable opportunity for change.
"I would encourage women to join the network, we need to ensure we change the conversation and listen with interest and without judgement, to open our minds to the actions we need to take to maintain a hospital and workplace that is fair, compassionate and inclusive for everyone. The first meeting is planned for 16 September and our first task will be to understand ‘what are the issues affecting you?’ The first session will outline how the network will work but primarily will gather everyone’s thoughts about what matters to you and what issues the wider group will want to focus on in the coming months. "
Caitlin Taylor, Foundation Training Programme Administrator – member of the Women’s Staff Network sets out why she is passionate about joining the network:
"I am passionate about joining the Women’s Network because the Trust, like all workplaces, is a representation of wider society and, as such, the same inequality issues present in wider society are present here. With this in mind, I therefore believe that it is important to proactively engage in initiatives designed to tackle inequality to create the best working environment possible. Being in an administrative role, in an office of predominantly women, I want to do my best to tackle gender bias in order to improve my own working life and those of my colleagues. Joining a network where ideas can be openly shared and positive working practices can be modelled is key in addressing gender-based inequality at the Trust and I would be excited to learn from my colleagues from different areas of the Trust."
Network Chair - Darashna Moodley
"My first conscious awareness that women were responsible for making valuable contributions to society was in the form of my mother’s membership of the neighbourhood “Women’s Group.” My mother was one of a small group of women who worked tirelessly to enhance the life of local women and add value to the community. As most children, I learnt from example and spent most weekends helping with fundraising.
My first authentic appreciation of women in society came during my undergraduate training. I visited a tribal village and needed permission from the Chief to speak to the women about contraception. The Chief refused, as did the village elders and we were turned away. I realised that the identity of a women is complex, it is powerful yet in many instances powerfully subservient. It was then that I understood fully the multiple layers of support and actions that are required to change people and change society. I embarked on my first membership of a formal organisation – the Student’s Union – using my voice to challenge deep pockets of inequality and encourage those members of the student body who were less willing to voice their challenges.
It is against this tapestry of my experience in South Africa that I embarked on my professional career in England recognising that the themes women face internationally are the same, only differing in intensity.
To Chair the Women’s Network at UHP is a distinct privilege and a huge opportunity to establish an inclusive network that empowers and enhances the potential of all those who identify as women by championing collaboration, driving transformation and challenging unsupportive behaviour.
Our aims are ambitious and we need your support to realise these aspirations so please get in touch and start by attending our next meeting."