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Barclays new mental health training provides support for farming industry

Barclays are trying to help tackle mental health in the rural community by giving specialist training to team members.

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Barclays have launched their new mental health project that aims to support rural community

Mental health training has been given to members of the Barclays Agricultural Managers teams, which will enable them to be able to support the rural community.

 

With a focus on mental health triggers that particularly affect farmers, how to spot early warning signs, and advice on how to provide practical assistance to those in need, Lizzie Asplin is one of the Barclays team members who has been involved.

 

Running a 600 acre farm alongside her partner in Kent, Lizzie knows the pressures farmer’s face first-hand.

 

"The rate of suicide is double in the farming industry," she says.

 

"With such regular contact, we could pick up the first signs."

 

Talk

 

As discussions surrounding mental health become more widely accepted, Lizzie believes things are changing and that 15 years ago, mental health was seen as a taboo subject.

 

She also says that farmers are more willing to to talk to someone they can relate to.

 

She says: "Mental health has always been here and always will be but there is someone to talk to."

 

"As agricultural relationship managers, we understand the difficulties farmers can face.

 

"I am involved [in farming] - I live and breathe it so I can have friendly chats with my customers and I feel they would tell me if there were any problems."

 

Lizzie says that in general, farmers do not want to be a burden, but across the farming sector financial pressures are a huge worry, paired with ’long hours working on their own.’

 

"Farmers can have a large amount of debt trying to run their businesses, and it can be a long time before they see the money return," she says.

 

"Some are never away from work whereas I can come in to the office and take a break from the farm."

 

 

 


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