In the current uncertain climate, farmers and crofters who are struggling financially or emotionally are being urged to get help early – before a problem becomes a crisis.
NFU Scotland and rural-charity RSABI have joined forces to help those who live in the countryside – and who can often feel isolated – to reach out and seek help.
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The new joint initiative aims to make taking that first step easier by encouraging farmers to post stickers with RSABI’s confidential helpline number somewhere prominent – in the hope that someone will make the call in their time of need.
RSABI welfare manager Mags Granger said that last year the organisation had helped more than 850 people and their families – but she expected this figure to rise as the challenges within the industry rose.
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“And as such those within the industry, no matter how small or large the problem is, whether that be financial pressures, work worries, stress, crisis, or anxiety, are being encouraged to pick up the phone to the helpline – 0300 111 4166 – which is open from 7am to 11pm, seven days a week.”
NFU Scotland president Andrew McCornick said that those working in the industry were renowned for bottling up their problems and just getting on with the job.
“However, we don’t realise the serious harm this is doing to both our mental and physical state, as well as the ongoing impact it can have on our families,” he said.
“As long-running supporters of RSABI, NFU Scotland has teamed up with the agricultural charity to encourage you, and your family and workforce to seek the help you need.”