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Farmers and crofters urged to seek help in times of need

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Farmers and crofters are being encouraged to seek help in times of difficulty.

NFU Scotland (NFUS) and rural charity RSABI have launched a campaign to highlight to producers the many different areas the charity’s helpline can help with.

The two organisations have produced a sticker with RSABI’s confidential helpline number on it, which they are giving out to farmers, crofters and rural businesses. It is hoped by having the stickers in promiment locations, producers will reach out and make a call in their time of need.

NFUS president Andrew McCornick encouraged people to seek help and said: “As an industry, we are renowned for bottling up our problems and just getting on with the job. However, we don’t realise the serious harm this is doing to both our mental and physical state, as well as the ongoing impact it can have on our families.”

RSABI welfare manager Mags Granger said the charity helped more than 850 people and their families last year – a figure that is likely to rise this year.

she said: “When you are having difficulties talking to someone is the starting point for support and help. Often that is a stumbling block for those in farming and crofting. We are here to listen, support and empower farmers and crofters to get the help they need, all in complete confidence. As well as the emotional support, we are also able to provide financial support, where required.

“At RSABI we understand how interconnected the farm business and household are and when things go wrong, stress and pressure increases, which has a knock-on effect on farmers and their families in so many ways. It’s much better to get help early on before a problem becomes a crisis.”

The charity’s helpline – 0300 111 4166 – is open from 7am to 11pm seven days a week.

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