Allflex Livestock Intelligence staff have paired with a mental health charity to trek a gruelling 84-miles across Hadrian's Wall in a bid to raise awareness of the issue in farming families.
Both organizations are promoting positive health and well-being in rural, farming communities and calling for those affected to seek support.
Over the course of three days, 19 employees from Allflex Livestock Intelligence and the Kaleidoscope Plus Group walked from Bowness-on-Solway on the northwest coast of Cumbria to Wallsend to the east of Newcastle Upon Tyne.
In the UK, 84 individuals are affected by suicide each week with a disproportionate number coming from the agricultural community.
"Loneliness, isolation and the lack of opportunity for communication are contributing factors,” added Dan Noble, marketing manager, UK and Ireland, Allflex Livestock Intelligence.
“It was very pertinent that we walked the 84 miles on Hadrian’s Wall Path to increase awareness of the devastating impact that mental illness can have on farming families and the wider rural community.”
The walkers covered 30, 30 and 24 miles, respectively, over three consecutive 15-hour days in July.
To-date, their efforts have raised over £3,000, which can fund 20 mental health first-aiders, 50 two-hour, suicide bereavement support groups or 300 half-hour, one-to-one, safe-place sessions with individuals who may be suffering from mental distress.
Anyone wishing to make a donation can do so on the group's JustGiving page. Alternatively, a donation of £10 can be made by texting ‘KPGWALL 10’ to 70085.
“The walk was a huge challenge for all who took part, physically, mentally and emotionally,” Dave Pickard, from mental health charity Kaleidoscope Plus Group explained.
We know that people who experience depression or suicidal feelings will be going through similar mental challenges every single day, and we want anyone who feels this way to reach out and get support to help them on their road to recovery.
"We would like to thank those who took part in the event, and everyone who has made a donation or supported us on our walk. We are hugely grateful for our ongoing partnership with Allflex Livestock Intelligence and look forward to working together in the future.”