Stena Line Supports Mental Health Bus

Leading ferry company Stena Line has joined with the 5asideCHESS Battling Suicide Bus initiative on the Northern Ireland leg of its UK tour which included attendance at the Breaker Breaker Truck Show.

The Breaker Breaker Truck Show is a fundraising Event in aid of Men’s Mental Health in particular lorry drivers, to raise awareness among this profession and men’s health in general, which took place at Nutts Corner on Sat 28th August 2021.

Diane Waldron, a volunteer with the 5asideCHESS Battling Suicide Bus said: “We have taken the bus all around the UK in an attempt to help with the epidemic of loneliness and isolation which has developed in recent years, especially so during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Diane added: “During the pandemic research has shown that in almost every region of the UK, mental ill health has been on the rise causing high levels of depression and sometimes, to suicide.  On the bus, amongst other practical support materials, we use a small game of 5asideCHESS as a tool to help get people connecting and talking, which is a very important first step.”

“I would like to commend Stena Line for their support in enabling us to bring the bus to Belfast.  We received a very positive response at the Breaker Breaker event in Belfast and a high level of engagement. Our 5asideCHESS sets are a self-help ice breaking tool to help people to connect with others and to develop social and life skills. This is important especially with those people who feel under pressure and lonely at this difficult time.”

Stena Line provided transport for the bus to and from Northern Ireland as well as supporting members of the group to engage with its passengers and crew to promote the work of the mental health charity.

Anna Breen, Stena Line’s Freight Commercial Manager (Irish Sea) said: “We were delighted to have the opportunity to work with and support the 5asideCHESS Battling Suicide Bus initiative, especially at the Breaker Breaker Truck Event which was well attended by many of the truckers we work with on a daily basis and their families.”

“We all know the stresses and strains which have been put on people in the last 18 months.  The commercial driving community has been experiencing its own issues in recent months so any opportunity to help shine a light on these and provide some practical support is one we wholeheartedly endorse at Stena Line.  I’ll like to congratulate Diane and her term on this very important initiative, and we look forward to working with them again in the future.”

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