FCN runs a confidential national helpline (03000 111 999) and e-helpline (firstname.lastname@example.org) which is open every day of the year from 7am-11pm. FCN has over 400 volunteers, located throughout England and Wales, who provide free, confidential, pastoral and practical support to anyone who seeks help, regardless of whether the issue is personal or business-related.
With the many challenges the industry is facing, FCN is helping the farming community to build personal and business resilience. Our FarmWell website (https://farmwell.org.uk/) provides a wealth of information and guidance around topics such as Brexit, Covid-19, mental health, faith and spirituality and much more.
In addition to our FarmWell resource, FarmWell Wales (https://farmwell.wales/ / https://farmwell.cymru/) has recently been created through a joint collaboration between various government bodies and rural support charities including the Welsh Government, FCN, Farming Connect, the DPJ Foundation, Tir Dewi, The Addington Fund, Mind Cymru, Mind Monmouthshire and R.A.B.I.
The website, which is operated by FCN, acts as a guide and support to individuals in the Welsh farming community about how they can develop their business and personal resilience during this uncertain time. A hard copy contact directory created through the FarmWell Wales initiative has also been posted to approximately 16,500 farm business across Wales - an invaluable resource for those in the farming community during this difficult and uncertain time. The directory is available on the FarmWell Wales website alongside bilingual downloadable resources.
FCN recently launched a collaboration with the Nuffield Farming Scholarships Trust to share personal experiences and stories about staying strong and resilient during difficult times. Nuffield Scholars are sharing wellbeing tips as part of a series of short social media video clips, designed to reduce stigma around mental health and promote openness. These videos will be published over the coming weeks and months at the following address: https://farmwell.org.uk/nuffield-scholars/
Complementary to this programme is our focus on reaching elderly, vulnerable and shielding members of the farming community. With long periods of lockdown creating increased feelings of isolation and loneliness for many, we are encouraging people who may welcome a phone conversation during this difficult time to reach out to FCN. We will be promoting this on social media using the hashtag #TimeToTalk.
FCN is part of the Farming Help partnership - a collaboration between FCN, The Addington Fund, R.A.B.I, RSABI and Forage Aid, supported by The Prince’s Countryside Fund. The initiative is in conjunction with The National Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs, The National Farmers’ Union, and the NFU Mutual Charitable Trust.
13-17 April marked Farming Help Awareness Week, highlighting how each of the partnership charities supports the farming community in different ways. You can find out more about Farming Help here: https://www.farminghelp.co.uk/
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