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Ashford Homes announces first Charity of the Year partnership with Wiltshire Mind

Ashford Homes is delighted to announce its first official Charity of the Year partnership with Wiltshire Mind. We will be organising a range of fundraising events over the next 18 months to raise as much money as we can for this unfunded local charity.

Wiltshire Mind is an independent charity supporting people in Wiltshire who are experiencing mental health problems or emotional distress. The charity was founded in 1993 in Devizes, supporting those living in long-term care to live and work in the community – following the closure of many mental health residential units. At this time, the charity was fully funded by the governing local councils across Wiltshire.

Nearly 30 years on, Wiltshire Mind continues to support the community, however, the funding has completely changed. Now affiliated to National Mind, Wiltshire Mind remains an independent charity, but they must raise every penny through fundraising or voluntary donations. The charity does not receive any statutory or commissioned income, and they rely on the community to help raise much needed funds. To provide its counselling, support groups and training services Wiltshire Mind must raise £465 each day of the year.

Paul Mills, Joint CEO of Wiltshire Mind said, “We are thrilled to partner with Ashford Homes to raise awareness of mental health and wellbeing in the construction industry. This year we celebrate our 30th anniversary, and look forward to supporting Ashford Homes with their fundraising events”.

Mental health charities are needed now more than ever, and mental health is a particular issue that is dominant in the construction industry. According to a survey conducted by the Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB), 26% of construction workers reported experiencing a mental health condition. Moreover, Mates in Mind (2022) found that men in the UK are three times more likely to die by suicide than women. However, in construction (a male dominated industry) men are three times more likely to die by suicide than the national average for men.

Stuart Morgan, Managing Director of Ashford Homes said, “We are delighted to announce Wiltshire Mind as Ashford Homes’ inaugural dedicated charity of the year. We have historically donated to Wiltshire Mind and seeing the funds go to such good use has been wonderful.

With the ongoing crisis of poor mental health in the construction industry, the company is taking steps to ensure that our team are well prepared in spotting signs and how to best support everyone we encounter. Wiltshire Mind recently visited our head office to provide training for the management team, providing an engaging, two-way discussion and highlighted particular areas in the business that we should pay attention to. Our team came out feeling much more confident in how to handle certain situations and to be comfortable with asking direct questions.

The construction industry is suffering from a serious mental health crisis, and it’s imperative that we take major steps to change things, we know the money raised will go to helping people across Wiltshire and look forward to working with Wiltshire Mind over the next 18 months.”

Please keep an eye on our website for our upcoming fundraising, and visit our JustGiving page if you’d like to support the charity.

For more information on Wiltshire Mind, visit their website.

Natalie Carpenter

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