OzHelp’s Health in Gear program takes support ‘on the road’ with Healthy Heads in Trucks & Sheds

  • Gundagai Health Checks

Leading suicide prevention organisation, the OzHelp Foundation (OzHelp), has announced a partnership with Healthy Heads in Trucks & Sheds (HHTS) that will see its Health in Gear truck driver wellbeing program delivered jointly with the Healthy Heads Roadshow (the Roadshow).

The partnership will deliver Health in Gear health checks and wellbeing support, along with the distribution of pocket-sized handbooks with practical mental health and wellbeing tips created by HHTS, at three industry-facing events in March.

Darren Black, CEO of OzHelp said this is a great partnership, part of an outreach approach to ensure truck drivers get health and wellbeing support, when and where they need it.

Health in Gear’s health checks for truck drivers are delivered by a wellbeing support worker and nurse, and offers ongoing support via a 24/7 phone line, and online self-help health and wellbeing resources.”

There are around 209,300 truck drivers in Australia. They deal with a number of on-the-job stressors including long work hours, tight deadlines, shift work, irregular sleep, absence from family and friends, poor diet and lack of exercise that can put them at greater risk of poor mental health and suicide. More recently, there have been additional pressures due to COVID-19 with border closures, testing requirements, changes at short notice, and increased demand for freight.

HHTS CEO Naomi Frauenfelder said: “The partnership provides an opportunity to work alongside OzHelp’s Health in Gear program to reach as many drivers as possible while they’re out on the road, offering them the support they need when it comes to their mental health and wellbeing”.

“By working together to deliver health checks and making resources more readily accessible we hope that people working in our industry feel supported and know where to turn when it comes to their mental health and wellbeing,” she said.

NHVR CEO, Sal Petroccitto, said: “I congratulate OzHelp and Healthy Heads in Trucks in Sheds for taking their health and safety program on the road, to ensure drivers and the supply chain are supported when it comes to their mental health and wellbeing.”

The partnership will kick off at three roadside hubs in March 2022, including:

  • BP Albury (Northbound) 16-18 March
  • BP Marulan (Southbound) 22-24 March
  • Shell Roadhouse Gundagai, 29-31 March

Truck drivers should keep an eye out for the Health in Gear Team roadside and the prominent RoadshowDAF LF truck, provided to HHTS by PACCAR, it’s dealers and the Australian Trucking Association.

For more information about HHTS and to stay up to date with the Roadshow visit: www.healthyheads.org.au

OzHelp’s Health in Gear program is funded by the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator’s Heavy Vehicle Safety Initiative supported by the Federal Government.

Transport and logistics workers and their families can access free counselling and 24/7 support by calling Health in Gear on 1800 464 327. For 24/7 crisis support, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14, Mensline on 1300 789 978, or Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467.