Uniting Dubbo host pamper days in Hermidale to help boost mental health

More than 100 farmers in the region were treated to a two-day pamper session in Hermidale at the weekend that aimed to boost their mental health.

Hosted by Uniting from Dubbo the days treated male and female farmers to free hairdressing, beautician services, reiki, chair massage, deep tissue and hand massages, yoga and meditation.

Event organiser and manager of Child and Family Services at Uniting Dubbo Catherine Lambert said the event is one of several initiatives run by the Uniting counselling team to engage with local farmers in a relaxed and community environment.


"We were extremely pleased with how successful it was," Ms Lambert said.

Across the two days, Ms Lambert said she was "blown away" with a staggering 111 pamper sessions they provided, not including the one-on-one yoga sessions and the added session with the school children following their cross country.

According to Ms Lambert it was important for small communities to be getting together to help each other through the tough times.

"We live in a really robust community where people think they're doing okay, and it's just about knowing that even though you might be doing okay, you should be able to access mental health services and should still feel okay about having a chat if you need to," she said.

"It might be about coping yourself, or it might be knowing about how to help other people who might be finding it a bit tough to cope at the moment.

"One of the big ways to do that is to stay connected. When you're already living out of town, you're on your own property it's easy to get even more isolated ... but it's really important that people keep talking to others in the community and making those connections and finding a reason to get together, because just sitting down and having a yarn with your mates is a really good way to support each other."

Uniting also hosted a dinner on the Friday night with guest speaker Craig Semple, a former career detective with the NSW Police, who shared his own mental health experiences.

Much of his career was invested in `high risk' law enforcement including the investigation of outlaw motorcycle gangs and homicides.

"He's a really down to earth, practicable and relatable guy," Ms Lambert said.

"He's really good at helping people normalise the need to talk about how they're coping and to understand mental health."

The event was sponsored by Uniting, with contributions from Frontier services and NLAG.