Farming mental health charity YANA launches national support directory

Aylsham Show 2018, Show president Michael Gamble at the launch of mental health charity YANA's natio

Aylsham Show 2018, Show president Michael Gamble at the launch of mental health charity YANA's national directory of rural support groups. Picture: Chris Hill - Credit: Chris Hill

An East Anglian mental health charity has launched a national directory of support groups aiming to help people struggling with the strains of farming and isolated rural life.

The YANA (You Are Not Alone) project provides confidential counselling for those in farming and rural industries across Norfolk and Suffolk.

But in response to frequent questions about whether there are similar organisations in other parts of the country, YANA has researched, funded and compiled a national directory of support groups and key national charities which can specifically help people in countryside communities.

The booklet also provides advice on how to recognise symptoms of stress and depression and how best to help a client, colleague, friend or family.

The first 1,000 copies are being distributed to relevant businesses, charities and organisations across the UK, and it is also available online at www.yanahelp.org.


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Jo Hoey from YANA said there is no cost for this first edition, as the charity had received 'sizable donations' following the tragic death of a Norfolk farmer.

'We wanted to make good use of the income and do something tangible in his memory,' she said. 'We hope that this directory will mean that many more people will be aware of the help that is available, how to access it and, importantly, how to be supportive to others.

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'We are so grateful to The Worshipful Company of Farmers and Farm Safety Foundation who have enthusiastically supported our work.

'We believe this booklet will demonstrate the huge benefits of similar charities working together to provide a real network throughout the UK. We want those facing difficulties in rural life to truly understand that 'You Are Not Alone' – good support is available.'

The directory was unveiled at the Aylsham Show on Monday, where show president Michael Gamble said: 'Farming can be a very lonely and vulnerable occupation and there are times when people feel really depressed, so it is good that someone like YANA can support them in this way. We need to make sure people are aware of the support that is available to them.'

• For copies of the directory, email johoey@yanahelp.org or download it from www.yanahelp.org.

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