Turn to FarmWell for help and advice
Poor mental health can be a significant issue in farming. The never-ending volatility of the industry, the threat of animal disease, the uncertainty about the future, the unpredictable weather, the long (and sometimes anti-social) working hours and the loneliness of farming all means that farmers and their family members are extremely vulnerable to poor mental wellbeing.
Volunteers providing free, confidential, pastoral and practical support
When times get tough, it can be difficult for farmers to know where to turn – this is where the Farming Community Network (FCN) can help.
FCN has approximately 100 volunteers throughout the South West who provide free, confidential, pastoral and practical support to anyone who seeks help. Most of FCN’s volunteers are involved in farming, or have close links with agriculture and therefore have a great understanding of the issues farming families regularly face.
People turn to FCN for help for a wide variety of issues, including financial problems, concerns about bovine TB and other animal diseases, family relationship breakdowns and worries about the future. But the one thing that the majority of those people have in common is that they are all experiencing some form of poor mental wellbeing. The aim of FCN is to help tackle the underlying issues that led them to their negative feelings and try and guide them to a more positive place in their life.
Whether the issue is personal or business-related, FCN’s volunteers will “walk with” those that need help and support them for as long as it takes.
It is widely anticipated that our workload will increase now that Britain has left the EU, so we believe that we have a duty to ensure that farmers are prepared for any changes that lie ahead. We must focus on helping them build personal and business resilience.
There is some great information available to help farmers become more resilient, but this information is rarely in one place and can often be difficult to access, especially if you are dealing with reduced mental wellbeing.
This is why we have launched a brand new initiative called FarmWell.
FarmWell is a one-stop online resources hub to help farmers and their businesses stay strong and resilient. FarmWell will give ready access to a range of vital information from a wide variety of sources. It is free to use and it has three clear aims:
- To help develop and keep farm businesses resilient through changing times
- To help farmers, their families and their staff become resilient and enable them to manage their personal and business lives more effectively
- To provide ready access to a range of support and help to anyone who may need it
How to contact FarmWell
FarmWell is available to use now and is already attracting interest from a wide variety of key agricultural stakeholders. To learn more about FarmWell, visit www.farmwell.org.uk.
If you, or someone you know needs someone to talk to, FCN is here for you. The FCN helpline is open from 7am-11pm every day of the year.