Mental Health Awareness Week

Date: 10/05/2017
Author: Sophia Bullard


The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the original author or contributor. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of the UK P&I Club.

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week and the Mental Health Foundation is encouraging people to look at mental health from a new angle. In the UK, mental health has been getting the royal treatment, with their Royal Highnesses the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry speaking out; so we thought it only right that seafarers get a bit of attention too! 

Seafarers are known to be more likely to suffer from mental health problems than their shore-based colleagues. This shouldn’t really come as a surprise to anyone as the demands of modern shipping mean longer periods away from home with little shore leave. 

So, this Mental Health Awareness week we want to challenge seafarers to take this five step challenge to better mental health:

1. Communicate and be more open. If you are struggling, let someone know!

2. Healthy body, healthy mind – try to take at least 15 minutes of exercise a day e.g. circuits.

3. Take some time to yourself – take some time for yourself each day to wind down.

4. Focus on the positive – be thankful for at least one thing everyday

5. Avoid social isolation; connect with your fellow crewmembers! Speak to someone you haven’t necessarily got to know yet and learn a new fact about them.

Further information and resources:

  • Crew Medical’s Mental Health resources
  • The Human Rights at Sea  post-traumatic stress leaflet
  • The Sailors’ Society Wellness at Sea programme

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About the Author:

Mental Health Awareness Week

Crew Health Programme Director

Sophia joined Thomas Miller in 1992 and from 1994 worked as a claims handler dealing mainly with French and Spanish members. In 2004 Sophia became the Crew Health Programme Director. As part of her work in the Crew Health Programme, Sophia has undertaken a large number of clinic audits, implemented the standard medical form and clinic guidelines. She has also led the scheme through the largest period of growth and development with a doubling of approved clinic facilities and a four fold member increase. Sophia is a Director of Thomas Miller & Co. Ltd.

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