Supporting Yellow Wellies’ Mind Your Head week

February 13, 2024

This article first appeared on the Yellow Wellies website on 13th Feb 2024 as a part of their Mind Your Head campaign.

Since 2016, The Royal Countryside Fund has run their Farm Resilience Programme, supporting nearly 1,000 farming families improve their business performance and make real changes on farm.

As part of this programme, farm businesses complete a ‘Business Health Check’ to get a better understanding of the financial performance of their on-farm enterprises.

Appreciating the importance of another type of health check, The Royal Countryside Fund approached us to create a brand new addition to the programme supported by NFU Mutual.

The new ‘Get A Head in Farming’ workshop demonstrates how important it is to look after, not just the physical, but the mental wellbeing of those living and working in the farm and encourage participants to prioritise their mental wellbeing as a key asset of the on-farm enterprise.

In January, Stephanie travelled to Northern Ireland for the first in a series of seven workshops in Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales. The Rathfriland and Strabane sessions were facilitated by the staff and mentors from Rural Support, Northern Ireland’s farming charity and they welcomed around 40 farming families over the two evenings.

In the immediate weeks after Mind Your Head, Stephanie will be packing her bags again to head North to Scotland where she will be meeting the participants in Aberdeenshire and Orkney…

Madeleine Taylor, Head of Operations at The Royal Countryside Fund said: “The new Get A Head in Farming sessions, as part of The Royal Countryside Fund’s Farm Resilience Programme, help farmers to learn to recognise the signs and symptoms of someone struggling with their mental health and consider ways to begin a conversation around mental health and how to refer someone for help. 

We’re thrilled to be working with The Farm Safety Foundation on these sessions, and the initial feedback has been hugely positive – we’re proud to be working in partnership to tackle one of the most pervasive issues facing farming. Our Farm Resilience Programme is all about building confidence and communities within farming and building awareness of the importance of good mental health is absolutely central to that.”

Click here to find out more about Yellow Wellies and their Mind Your Head week.

National Directory of Farm and Rural Support Groups

The directory lists regional, national and membership organisations which can provide support, advice and guidance to farming and rural communities. It also signposts to support for farmers in crisis.