The 2022 Mental Health Awareness Week campaign–that centers on loneliness this year–kicks off May 9 and continues through May 16. Racing Welfare, supporting the British horseracing workforce, launched the initiative to mirror the national initiative run by the Mental Health Foundation. Workplaces across the horseracing and Thoroughbred breeding industries are encouraged to set aside time during their working day to take part in the #TeaAndTalk initiative. Mental Health Awareness Week aims to promote open conversations on all aspects of mental health with Racing Welfare's campaign specifically raising awareness of the mental health services offered by the charity.
Between January and the end of March 2022 the charity supported 1,236 individuals across the racing industry. This is a 27% increase compared to 2021. During the same period, Racing Welfare provided 950 instances of support to racing's people and their close dependents relating to mental health issues.
In tandem with the week's activities, a film produced in conjunction with Equine Productions and featuring staff at Alice Haynes Racing and Jockey Club Racecourses in Newmarket has been released. It will be shown across racecourses and horseracing's media throughout the week. The film is narrated by raceday presenter and Racing Welfare beneficiary, Anthony Kemp, who has been an advocate for the charity's mental health services. In addition to the film, Racing Welfare will distribute green ribbons on racecourses for people to wear to raise awareness for Mental Health Awareness Week.
Racing Welfare also announced its inaugural Health & Wellbeing across the Horseracing Industry conference, which takes place Sept. 19. This virtual conference will offer expert presentations from speakers promoting health and wellbeing at work. The keynote speaker for the conference is one of the UK's leading sports psychologists, Michael Caulfield Msc. Additional panelists will be announced in the coming weeks.
Early bird tickets go on sale Thursday, May 12 and can be purchased www.viaracingwelfare.co.uk.
Racing Welfare will also offer a Mental Health First Aid Course at Lingfield racecourse May 17 -18. For more information, click here.