FIFO Mental Health Tour

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Kick On’s FIFO Camp Tour of mining and gas sites in Australia is a targeted educational campaign that addresses the mental health needs of some of Australia’s most vulnerable workers.

The overall aim is to encourage male mining and gas industry workers to engage in conversation about mental health for the benefit of their own psychological wellbeing, and to support the wellbeing of their colleagues. This project aims to increase the overall mental health of the FIFO workforce by encouraging supportive, empathic conversation around the struggles inherent not only to the working conditions, but also in the culture of masculinity and the hardships of managing long-distance family relationships.

Key objectives

Key objectives of the FIFO Camp Tour include:

  • addressing stigma around mental health
  • Identifying warning signs of mental health issues
  • Providing a set of coping strategies
  • Coaching workers to manage relationships under FIFO conditions

The FIFO Camp Tour aims to address stigma around mental health by opening up conversation around mental health issues in a safe space, tackling it in a way that is accessible to the highly masculine culture in the working environment. Psychoeducation will be provided regarding both how to identify warning signs of mental health issues in oneself and others, and how to cope with and seek help for a range of issues that may be experienced. Some coaching advice will also be provided on how to manage relationships with loved ones enduring the hardships of distance and reduced opportunities for contact and communication, and information will be made available regarding support services that can assist.

Activities

Kick On will be touring mining and gas sites Australia-wide, in partnership with the mental health organisation,
Mates in Construction. Key aims of the Tour include:

  • Providing entertainment to FIFO mining and gas workers
  • Delivering a message of the importance of good mental health
  • Providing a set of coping strategies
  • Providing information regarding follow-up support

As FIFO mining and gas sites are usually remote, workers are far from their families and home for extended periods of time. Working long shifts means entertainment is integral to balance on-site – boosting morale, relieving stress, and fosteringg an increased sense of wellbeing. Entertainment on the Tour will be provided in two ways:

Comedy

A comedy event will relax the audience and prepare them for the information to be delivered afterwards, as well as delivering the mental health message in an accessible and entertaining format.

Music

A concert will cap off the event at each site and provide opportunities for reinforcement of the mental health message between songs.

Between the entertainment events, a presentation will be delivered by a life coach, detailing the importance of recognising mental health issues and addressing them. The coach will deliver material regarding how to identify mental health issues arising in oneself and one’s colleagues and friends, how to cope with any issues that arise, and how to seek help for oneself or another. Following the presentation, information regarding help-seeking and support services will be made available to audience members, and a counsellor will be present to field any concerns individuals may wish to address at that time.

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FIFO Program