Scotmid retail society has become the first co-operative to launch a Menopause Café for its colleagues.
The staff-led initiative aims to open up conversations around menopause and create a safe and inclusive environment to share experiences and discuss challenges.
The member-owned retail society, which has around 4,000 employees located across Scotland, Northern Ireland and the north of England, held its first online Café on 28 June during Coop Fortnight, an annual celebration of co-operation.
“C-oop Fortnight feels like a fitting time to launch the initiative,” said Shirley MacGillivray, head of membership and community.
The launch of the cafe follows Scotmid sponsoring the world’s only menopause festival, #FlushFest2022, organised by Perth-based charity, Menopause Café.
Scotmid’s membership, community and society press liaison manager, Lynne Ogg, said that meeting the festival organisers had left her excited about the idea of setting a Menopause Café at Scotmid, so she began to take the idea forward.
“The response was positive and supportive so, as part of our new Wellbeing initiative, we officially launched the Café on Tuesday,” she added.
“As well as positive feedback from Tuesday’s Café, we are also hearing that the conversation has opened up between colleagues across the Society. Tuesday’s group decided they would like to meet monthly, so plans are already underway for the next Café and we look forward to welcoming more colleagues to the conversation.
One Scotmid colleague named Gillian, who attended the Café, said: “I had no idea what to expect, the Menopause Café concept was completely new to me. I thought I would go along to just observe but I found myself relaxed and happy to share my own story. It was reassuring to hear from others, I don’t feel so alone. I felt uplifted and more positive after only one meeting so am already looking forward to the next.”