Initiative tackles mental wellbeing
Multiple mental health organisations are uniting to raise awareness about mental wellbeing within the agricultural industry at this year’s Dowerin GWN7 Machinery Field Days.
At the heart of the field days site will be the Blue Tree Project, with a community tree being installed and visitors invited to put their hand print, in blue paint, on its trunk.
Dowerin Field Days event co-ordinator Kahli Rose said a special event for Wednesday had also been organised, with support from CSBP.
Ms Rose said the CSBP Health and Wellbeing Luncheon at 1pm in the Dowerin Community Club would focus on reducing stigma and exploring ways in which people could seek help.
“We just felt that it was such an important topic, but unfortunately it also often gets overlooked,” she said.
“There is a big stigma around mental health, and we just want to minimise it and let people know there are lots of avenues available to get help.”
The luncheon will feature presentations from Lifeline WA with special guest speaker Paul Duffield, a former Fremantle Dockers player, as well as Blue Tree Project co-ordinator Kendall Whyte and representatives from SafeAgWA and Regional Men’s Health.
Mr Duffield said he hoped his own story would influence and help others.
“It’s a really significant issue in society and something we’re being made more and more aware of from the pressures that come with day-to day life,” he said.
“But the more awareness there is, the better, and I can relate to some of those things. I hope that if someone thinks, ‘Well, if Paul has gone out and talked about it, then I can talk about it too’.”
CSBP Fertilisers general manager Tanya Rybarczyk said creating a solid support network for those experiencing mental health issues and their families was a part of the company’s aim to keep WA’s regional communities strong and sustainable.
“Through our partnership with Lifeline WA, we understand that unfortunately in many smaller communities there are high rates of suicide, due to stigma around mental illness, limited access to mental health services and increased travel times to get help,” she said.
“But our team hopes that by supporting events like the CSBP Health and Wellbeing Luncheon, we can help to raise awareness around mental health and spread the message that it is okay to ask for help.”
Sponsors Socklich and Co and Pink Argyle Diamonds Australia have donated a pendant featuring 29 white diamonds and an Argyle pink diamond to use as a door prize at the event.
The event is free but ticketed and will be held at 1pm on August 28.
Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.
Sign up for our emails