Sarina Ute Muster Gathers to Raise Awareness of Suicide Prevention

BY: Tracey Mesken03/10/2019

​Over this long weekend from Saturday 5 to Monday 7 October the Sarina Showgrounds will host an action-packed event of driving, bull-riding, A Show and Shine, Aussie FMX displays, live country music concerts, great food, fireworks and activities for the whole family, and there are camping options on site.The idea was hatched by Peter Zigmantas and his wife Diane, combining their love of motorsport and events with Ziggy's drive to make a difference in his local community.The event’s nominated charity for 2019 is Grapevine Group.Some years ago, Ziggy trained with the Grapevine group in responding to suicide and supporting people impacted or at risk, after the loss of his brother.Ziggy is one of 5458 people trained by the Grapevine group to provide support to his various and extensive networks including Army veterans, in his role as WorkPac Regional Risk manager, and across family and friends.The major motoring event this weekend will bring people together from the local community to promote awareness and education for suicide prevention.Ziggy’s national company WorkPac has got behind sponsoring the event to help share its message widely.Managing Director, Mr. Praanesh Prasad said suicide prevention is a hugely important issue for every Australian community and WorkPac is committed to supporting mental health programs within the company and beyond it.“Ziggy is our Regional Risk Manager and he really walks the talk; he and his wife Di have supported the great work done by the Grapevine group in the Mackay community for years, raising money and awareness, and working tirelessly behind the scenes to pull together this impressive event – it is inspiring for us all,” he said.More information:

National Safe Work Month - Mental Health & Wellbeing

BY: Tracey Mesken29/10/2015

​Mental Health can affect anyone regardless of their age, gender, ethnicity or social group. The most common forms of mental ill health are anxiety, depression, phobic anxiety disorders and obsessive compulsive disorders.  It is anticipated that by 2020 depression will rank second to heart disease as the leading cause of disability worldwide. Health and wellbeing at workConnection between health and work:The connection between physical hazards such as noise, dust and chemical hazards and health are well recognised amongst employers and employees alike. Less well understood is the relationship between mental and physical wellbeing and the jobs we do.Over two million people report suffering an illness they believe has been caused or made worse by their work.This can take the form of stress, anxiety, back pain, depression and increased risk of coronary heart disease.Possible signs of mental illness in the workplacePoor mental health increases the likelihood of sleep disturbance and anxiety, which can reduce the ability to concentrate on work tasks and production.  Fatigue and other outcomes of stress and poor mental health can increase the likelihood of an employee being hurt. Some key signs to look for are:Constantly feeling down or hopelessHaving little interest or pleasure in doing thingsAn employee maybe more irritable, restless, feeling tired all the time, or experience a loss of energyIncrease in sick daysExcessive use of alcohol or drugsRapid changes of emotional moodPoor performanceOverall, a person’s usual behaviour changes - they don’t seem their usual selves.StressStress can be defined as “the adverse reaction people have to excessive pressures or other types of demand placed on them.”Employees have responsibilities to talk to their managers about any external influences which can turn otherwise normal pressures of work into excessive ones.Breaking the silence around mental illnessThe negative attitudes and behaviours that surround mental illness prevent many workplaces from understanding how to deal with mental health issues. Stigma can cause co-workers to isolate someone with a problem, and cause those living with mental illnesses to hide their condition.How do we create an accepting, non-discriminatory environment?In WorkPac it starts from the top down. Our management strive to ensure a good working culture where differences are valued, discrimination is not accepted, and cooperative and flexible approaches to working situations for everyone are the norm.This is achieved by fostering an environment that promotes:InclusionRespectListeningUnderstandingWhat can I do?There are things that you can do to help yourself be well and stay well. These are the simple, effective things that you know work for you. What's in your wellness toolbox? Some examples include:Talk to a friendEat three healthy meals per dayExercisePlay with your family or pet after workGo for a walkDo some stretching exercisesReadDo something nice for someone elseWatch a videoListen to musicSee a counsellorAsk for a medication checkGet outdoors regularlyMost importantly seek help, speak to someone and don’t struggle through alone!  Remember it’s not just a case of trying to be tough, if you don’t feel mentally well seek help.WorkPac has an Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provided by Gryphon Psychology; this company offers professional counselling for all employees, partners and dependent children to help resolve personal and work related problems.  EAP is a free service and is completely confidential.This month is National Safe Work Month and is a great opportunity for all of us to focus on promoting safety in the workplace to reduce death, injury and disease.  If assistance or information is required relating to WorkPac’s EAP provider Gryphon Psychology, please contact your assigned WorkPac Recruitment Coordinator.  The WorkPac Employee Assistance Number is 1800 056 076.