This week marks Mental Health Awareness Week. Research by CITB has shown that almost all construction workers have experienced stress in the last year, and more than a quarter have experienced suicidal thoughts. FIS reported on the growing concerns for mental health on 29 January 2021 emphasising the training and support available for FIS members.
The focus for this week to improve and support good mental health is being close to nature, it won’t cure all problems, but it can help put things in perspective, take the pressure off and bring calm to daily lives. Even just looking at wildlife, trees and plants from a window can help, although a walk exposes our senses to more of the nature around us.
CITB has published a story from Andy Stevens, a self-employed builder who hit rock bottom but who has since recovered “This has to stop. Too many people are struggling, I hope my story can help.” You may find some parts of his powerful story familiar from your own experiences or those of colleagues.
Please take the time to find out about free help for you and those you work with, detailed below.
While the largest employers might offer support to workers, smaller companies and sole traders may not know how to access free assistance that’s available. CITB is funding an initiative to help resolve this by providing accessible and consistent mental health support for everyone working in construction, including a standardised approach across the industry. They also fund The Lighthouse Club charity to provide support, which has trained nearly 5,000 mental health first aiders in the construction sector who have helped around 6,300 people so far.
The Lighthouse Club delivers charitable, financial and emotional support to the construction industry. If you would like to apply for financial or wellbeing support you can either call their 24/7 confidential Construction Industry Helpline on 0345 605 1956 in the UK, and 1800 939 122 in Ireland, download the helpline app (External link – Opens in a new tab or window), or submit your application online here (External link – Opens in a new tab or window).
If you feel your organisation needs to train and qualify someone with skills to support you employees FIS will be happy to assist, give us a call on 0121 707 0077 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.