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11 October,2017

Grooms urged to talk about their mental health

A new project to raise awareness of mental health issues within the equine industry has been launched by the British Grooms Association (BGA).

The Grooms Minds initiative was launched today (10 October) to tie in with World Mental Health Day.

This comes in response to increasing numbers of grooms, riders and employers contacting the BGA for help and advice.

“My experience of being bullied whilst working at a yard was the catalyst for the formation of the BGA,” said association founder and executive director Lucy Katan.

“It is something I will never forget, and at the time there was no organisation for me, as a groom, to turn to.

“I am always concerned when we receive communications from grooms who are suffering from mental health issues in their workplace, and the BGA is determined, through the Grooms Minds project, to raise the awareness of such.”

The project aims to identify specific issues associated with mental health in the equine industry; to raise awareness of these and focus on how to address the issues.

One former groom, who did not wish to be named, said her anxiety “snuck up” on her.

“Being a groom was my dream career and I enjoyed every aspect of it,” she said.

“I didn’t feel I could talk to anyone about it because I was angry and disappointed with myself.

“I hope the Grooms Minds project will help employers and grooms themselves be more alert to their mental wellbeing.”

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