Construction workers in crisis are being urged to use a new free counselling service that has been set up by a national builders charity after its inaugural Big Brew fundraising campaign raised enough cash to run the service for the next two years.
Band of Builders (BoB) is reaching out to tradespeople who are experiencing anxiety, depression, loneliness, relationship issues, self-harm, feeling suicidal or any other trauma to encourage them to take the all-important first step of seeking help, which is tailored for those in the construction industry.
Tradespeople can self-refer themselves through the charity’s website and receive confidential counselling in person (dependent on location), by phone or online via a video call service such as Microsoft Teams or Zoom.
Band of Builders – a registered charity which helps members of the UK construction industry battling illness or injury through the completion of practical projects carried out by volunteers using donated materials – is also funding the training of 150 mental health awareness courses – designed primarily for builders merchants staff across the UK, as they are often the first line of support for tradespeople.
The introduction of the counselling service and the drive to make mental health awareness courses available is the charity’s response to tackling the mental health crisis within the construction industry, where the suicide rate of UK construction workers is estimated to be as high as two people every day. UK construction workers are also nearly three times as more likely to die by suicide than their counterparts in other industries.
Peter Cape, Big Brew lead at Band of Builders, is keen to encourage any construction worker in need – or even an immediate family member of a tradesperson – to access help and support through the new counselling service.
“We hope that our new counselling service can be a real lifeline for people who think they have nowhere else to turn.”
The counselling service can be accessed from (www.bandofbuilders.org/pages/apply-for-help) and by clicking the Wellbeing Service