Farmer depression takes centre stage in Mind Your Head week

The Farm Safety Foundation, is highlighting the importance of farmers looking after their mental health in the second Mind Your Head week, which runs until Friday (February 15).

Throughout the week, the Farm Safety Foundation is reminding farmers and farming families that Valentine’s week; when we are supposed to celebrate love and togetherness, can sometimes highlight how different, alone, or low we feel and if that is the case, help is available.

The Foundation’s website www.yellowwellies.org and social media channels are sharing stories, advice and key messages and a new hero film, “A Quiet Night Inn” has been released on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

Stephanie Berkeley, who leads the Farm Safety Foundation said: “Last year’s campaign was welcomed by the farming community but one thing has become evident, farmer health and wellbeing cannot, and should not, be ignored – by any of us. Simply pretending the issue does not exist or has no impact on the industry is not acceptable.

“This year we are mounting the week-long campaign in the run up to one of the biggest and possibly most stressful events facing the industry – Brexit.

“In previous times of stress such as the BSE crisis in 1986 and the outbreak of Foot and Mouth in 2001, there was a sharp increase in the number of farmer suicides as farm incomes declined. Learning from past experiences we need to be prepared to support our farmers through this time and this is what we are great at, as an industry.”

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