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Directory of rural support groups

22nd Jan 2019 / By Alistair Driver

YANA (You Are Not Alone) has sent the NPA a link to their National Directory of Rural Support Groups.

The mental health support organisation said it was delighted to be able to support NPA members and that the directory should be a very useful resource.

You can access the directory here:

NPA policy services officer Lizzie Wilson contacted YANA as part of the NPA’s initiative to support producers with mental health issues. This is includes expanding the existing Allied Industry network to provide help and support for pig producers.

Lizzie said: “This is a very comprehensive and really useful guide and I would encourage all our members to have a look at the options out there should you, a family member, a member of staff or a friend need it.”

Writing in the December issue of Pig World, Lizzie wrote: “There is lots of support out there, including the Farming Community Network and the very embryonic Allied Industry Support Network, whereby NPA is formalising the network of support already provided by the allied sector.”

If you’re interested in volunteering to help, you can contact Lizzie at 

FCN support

Also writing in Pig World, FCN chief executive Charles Smith outlined the signals which, if seen on a prolonged basis, may indicate poor mental health that pig farmers should look out for, including: Eating more or less than normal, mood swings, lack of concentration, poor physical health, feeling tense, useless, worried or nervous, poor sleep, fatigue and forgetfulness.

“If you have identified any of these signs and they are not normal behaviour, the next step is to talk to someone. You can talk to your friends and family, other farmers, your neighbour or your GP," he said.

“Or if you are worried about talking to those closest to you, for fear of becoming a burden, you can talk to The Farming Community Network (FCN). Our volunteers have a wealth of experience in supporting farmers and farming families who have been affected by financial difficulties and animal disease.

“Our confidential national helpline is open every day of the year from 7am-11pm and the majority of our volunteers are from a farming background and therefore have a great understanding of the issues pig farmers regularly face.”