Tackling Suicide in the Construction Industry with Football
We know that suicide is the biggest killer of men under 50. But did you know that low skilled male construction workers are 3.7 times more at risk than other men?
A study by the office of national statistics found that of 10,688 suicides in the UK, 13.2% were in the construction industry. The study, which looked at the number of suicides in the 5 years up to 2015, found that the construction industry had the highest suicide rate of any profession. It means that for construction workers, suicide poses a greater risk to life than falling from a great height.
There are different reasons for these tragic statistics. In the first part, the fact the industry is male dominated is going to increase the risk immediately. Seventy-five percent of people who take their own lives in the UK are men. Charities such as CALM (The Campaign Against Living Miserably) recognise this and are working to raise awareness, prevent suicide, and encourage an acceptance of mental health issues, particularly for men who are most at risk.
Men are less inclined to seek help when they are suffering from depression, anxiety or mental health issues, which means they are more at risk. They often find it harder to talk about their concerns or worries which can internalise the problems making matters worse. In the workplace, people are often afraid of the stigma associated with mental health problems and this prevents them from seeking help. That’s why two of the UK’s leading office construction and fit out companies, Overbury and Morgan Lovell, are stepping forward to challenge this perception and change the story.
Overbury and Morgan Lovell have just announced that they will be sponsoring this year’s Mental Health World Cup. The charity 5-a-side football tournament will play on Sunday 12th May at Queen’s Park Rangers’ (QPR) Loftus Road Stadium. The two national office fit out businesses, which are part of the Morgan Sindall Group Plc, have been strong supporters of wellbeing initiatives in their respective businesses. This partnership is a reflection of the importance of mental health issues to them and to the construction industry as a whole.
Mental Health World Cup organiser, Giancarlo Gaglione, explained how important this move is for the tournament and how it will help to tackle suicide rates in the construction industry:
“Having Overbury and Morgan Lovell as the main sponsors of this year’s Mental Health World Cup is going to give a real boost to our cause. Not only is it going to help us raise awareness in the industry as a whole. It also gives a clear message to people working in construction, that it’s ok to not be ok. That we can talk about mental health, that people can admit when they have problems and that they can get the help they need. If we can change the perception, then we can save lives. That’s what it’s all about.”
The 5 a side football tournament (formerly know as the Lan the Baron World Cup) has been delighting amateur footballers since 2012, raising money for CALM. Forty pence of every pound raised goes to fund their telephone helpline which saved 65 lives in January 2019 alone. The Mental Health World Cup, sponsored by Overbury and Morgan Lovell and QPR provides the perfect opportunity to increase awareness and raise funds in the fight against male suicide, which will ultimately save lives.
A limited number of teams are still available. To reserve your team, click here.
To find out about further corporate sponsorship opportunities, contact us for a brochure or to find out more.