The Lighthouse Construction Industry Charity has partnered with CITB and Samaritans to create a wellbeing support tool, as part of the industry wide initiative Make It Visible.
Make It Visible aims to make welfare and wellbeing support visible on every construction site, helping to reduce the stigma around the subject and increase awareness of the support pathways available. Having secured over £400,000 in funding from CITB, a free website portal was created earlier this year to support the initiative.
The portal provides a wide range of resources, covering themes of emotional, physical, and financial wellbeing. It aims to help individuals recognise when they’re struggling and how to cope with the challenges they’re facing. For each area, there is an extensive list of organisations that can provide further in-depth advice and support.
Research from the Lighthouse Club shows that stress, depression, or anxiety accounts for 27% of all work-related illness in construction. Tragically, it also reveals that two construction workers in the UK take their own lives each day. The charity’s mission is to ensure that no construction worker or their family feels alone in a crisis, and that they get the support they need before it’s too late.
The Make It Visible campaign also has a taskforce of people who are dedicated to visiting construction companies, builders’ merchants, hire centres, and sites across the UK and Ireland to get the conversation started and raise awareness of the free resources. The team has spoken to almost 30,000 people and visited more than 340 sites since the campaign’s launch in May, earlier this year.
The portal is currently referring visitors to the world’s biggest mental health check-in, One Million Lives. This free tool has been developed by mental health professionals to help users assess their current state of mind and better understand the complexities of mental health. One Million Lives aims to create a global ripple effect by encouraging users to share the tool with friends and family.
Bill Hill, Lighthouse Construction Industry Charity CEO, said: “We have been overwhelmed by the support from our industry to take on the challenge of improving workforce welfare and wellbeing as a unified force. This new portal curates all the amazing free services from various charities in the UK and Ireland and simplifies access for anyone seeking emotional, physical or financial help. The CITB has been instrumental in making this happen. There is much more to do but this is a great step forward.”
Tim Balcon, CITB Chief Executive, said: “We know that there is a huge mental health crisis in the construction industry, and we must do more to support workers and their families. The statistics presented by the Lighthouse Charity’s research are trulydevastating,andwith World Mental Health Day upon us, I urge anyone who is struggling right now to reach out to the charity’s helpline.
“CITB has been making improvements to ensure employees get the wellbeing support they need, and I feel very passionately about carrying this through to industry. The work we are doing with the Lighthouse Club will help drive long term culture change and promote fairness, inclusion, and respect across workforces.
“There is a great selection of resources online, and I hope that this will make support more accessible to the wider industry. When all workers can access support, without fear of stigma, lives will be saved and attracting new entrants will be easier.”
To find out more and access the resources, visit the Make It Visible portal today.
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