As 2018 draws to a close, we would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for your support throughout a year that has been very difficult for the construction industry and a very exciting but challenging one for our Charity.
This year has seen an unprecedented number of cases presented to our Helpline for our charitable services. We’ve also seen a huge increase for requests of our helpline packs and we now have over 330,000 helpline cards in circulation within our construction workforce.
We always knew that the need was there, all we had to do was to tell as many construction workers as possible how we could help.
Last year we supported 1524 families and spent £736,625 on charitable services. This year, we expect to support around 1800 families and spend over £1,150,000 on charitable services. On the positive side these figures show that we are reaching out to more construction workers and their families, but it also means that too many of our construction families find themselves in desperate situations.
As a charity we have now become central to helping the industry address the serious mental health issues in construction. With two construction workers taking their own life every single working day, and stress, depression and anxiety accounting for a fifth of all work-related illness, it’s vital that we promote proactive projects, continue to provide our helpline services and put additional funding into our mental health programme. Over the year we have been working with the CITB and a volunteer industry group called Building Mental Health. With their guidance and funding we are project managing an initiative to train over 3000 on-site mental health first aiders by 2020. This in turn will complement our 24/7 Helpline services.
Our most recent exciting news is that we’ve now launched our new Construction Industry Helpline App. This free app is available on Android and Apple and provides information, advice and guidance on a number of wellbeing topics including stress, anxiety and depression. It’s a preventative tool which gives support at the initial stages of a situation, therefore mitigating the possibility of escalation.
Our Regional Lighthouse Clubs continue to form the backbone of our Charity and it’s great to see the resurgence of the Midlands, North Scotland and North West Clubs. If you’d like to get involved in any way, our clubs are always looking for volunteers and would be delighted to hear from you.
The significant escalation in families needing financial and emotional support and the proactive work we have undertaken has put pressure on our reserves and resources and we predict that the need for our charitable services will grow to about £2,000,000 by 2020.
This is a truly exciting time for our charity and we now have a portfolio of much needed charitable services that we can deliver to those in crisis in our industry. However, the only way we can sustain these services and our momentum is to dramatically increase our predictable income. That is why we launched our Company Supporters Programme earlier this year and hopefully you’ve seen our ‘Save a Life’ campaign aimed at companies just like yours to commit to making an annual donation.
If we can get 200-300 companies engaging in this programme, then we will build a solid platform to ensure the longevity of the charity and sustain our valuable charitable services.
Thank you again for your invaluable support throughout 2018 and we would like to wish you all a very safe and happy Christmas and New Year.
Shining brighter … Reaching Further