Racing for victory
(Photo captioned: Helen Russell collecting an award from Joanne Smith from Chase Race, who organised the West Midlands Regional Triathlon Championships.)
A member of the NASUWT’s staff is powering to national and international sporting success with a little help from the Union.
Helen Russell, an NASUWT Principal Official for Equality and Training, competes as a top triathlete and duathlete.
Entered in the 35- 39 age category, Helen has chalked up a number of victories this year, including taking the British aquathlon title, a combination of swimming and running.
She has also competed on the world stage, coming second in the European Duathlon Championships earlier this year, which challenges competitors to complete a gruelling run, then a swim, followed by a further run. She placed third in the 2009 World Duathlon Championships in the USA and picked up a bronze medal in the World Aquathlon Championships in Budapest last month.
Helen, who is sponsored by the NASUWT, has already been selected to represent Great Britain in the 2011 European Triathlon Championships in Spain.
Athletic success came later in life, as although Helen was a keen runner as a child, she gave up the sport in her late teens, only returning to it in her mid-twenties. She competed in her first triathlon just four years ago and manages to fit a gruelling training regime around her full-time work for the Union.
“I chose to start triathlons for the challenge and am so proud to have progressed to a level where I now represent Great Britain,” she said.
“I am grateful for the support of the NASUWT, which enables me to represent my country at an international level.”
Start Living – Stop Stressing
The NASUWT is committed to working to improve the wellbeing of its members, particularly as teaching is recognised as one of the most stressful occupations.
To support members to take ownership of their wellbeing, the NASUWT has created an online Wellbeing at Work tool. This resource enables members to check their wellbeing and provides them with a range of practical solutions to tackle stress in the workplace. It can also be used to measure wellbeing over time – an important factor in the long-term management of health and safety.
The Wellbeing at Work tool can be found at: www.nasuwt.org.uk/wellbeingsurvey.
Beyond the classroom
The year 2011 marks 100 years since the School Journey Association (SJA) started providing trips and tours.
The non-profit-making charity aims to offer inclusive learning experiences to all children, including those with learning and physical disabilities and those from disadvantaged families. It is run by teachers and ex-teachers, with technical advisers, who are all unpaid volunteers.
The ethos of SJA is that all children benefit significantly by extending their learning environment beyond the classroom. School visits offer children the opportunity of first-hand learning experiences that will enrich their lives and build on knowledge gained in the classroom, whilst encouraging personal development that will lead to greater independence.
SJA supports schools to organise stimulating and educational trips and tours and can organise accommodation and transport and often negotiate reduced entrance fees to attractions. For disadvantaged families, the charity aims to support up to half the cost of trips. It is compliant with health and safety regulations and all tours are risk assessed.
A range of day and longer trips are on offer covering a number of European destinations, including France, Spain and Germany, as well as UK-based excursions.
For more details, see the SJA website at www.sjatours.org.
NASUWT advice on visits can be found at: www.nasuwt.org.uk/SchoolVisits.