Greater Anglia joins forces with Samaritans to bust ‘Blue Monday’ myth

Health / Fri 12th Jan 2024 at 07:32am

RAIL industry joins charity to encourage staff and public to have a cuppa and a catch-up for the charity’s annual Brew Monday campaign.

While people are contending with winter weather, the post-Christmas slump, and other pressures, Greater Anglia is helping to highlight that there is no such thing as the saddest day of the year, also known as ‘Blue Monday’.

The Samaritans have long campaigned to dispel the idea that the third Monday of January is particularly difficult, as it could discourage people from seeking life-changing help. 

The suicide prevention charity’s listening volunteers are consistently busy every day of the year, responding to a call for help every 10 seconds, which is why it is working with the rail industry to turn the day into something useful by running Brew Monday.

The annual event encourages friends and family to stay connected by having a cuppa and a catch-up, and this year is no different.

To help celebrate and raise awareness of Brew Monday, Greater Anglia staff will be joining Samaritans volunteers at stations across the network on Monday 15 January, handing out teabags and chatting to passengers about the power of connecting over a cuppa.

Events will be held at:

  • London Liverpool St 10.00-14.00, alongside Combat 2 Coffee
  • Cambridge 07.30-09.30, 16.00-18.00
  • Lowestoft 10.00-14.00, hosted by the Lowestoft Central Project and sponsored by Wherry Lines Community Rail Partnership
  • Colchester 06.00-08.00
  • Harlow Town 07.00-09.00
  • Bishops Stortford 07.00-09.00
  • Ely 07.30-09.30, 16.00-18.00

Georgia Payne, Greater Anglia’s Safeguarding and Trespass Prevention Lead, said:

“We are really proud to be supporting Samaritans’ Brew Monday campaign again this year and spreading this important message to our passengers and staff.

“Samaritans has worked in partnership with Network Rail and the wider rail industry since 2010 encouraging the public and our staff to recognise the power of human connection and start a conversation which could save a life.

“We are putting that into practice and helping to bust the Blue Monday myth over a brew.”

Olivia Cayley, Head of Samaritans Rail Programme, said:

“At Samaritans we know there is no such thing as Blue Monday and people can feel low at any point of the week or year.

“Perpetuating ‘Blue Monday’ may put off reaching for life-changing help if they think everyone else is also feeling down.

“It could also lead people to think they ought to be feeling sad, or believe other people are in worse situations. We do not want anyone to dismiss or minimise the challenging issues they’re facing.  

“We want everyone to know that you are never alone and even small moments of human connection like this can play a big role in helping people who are currently struggling.”

“We are so grateful to the rail industry for their support of Brew Monday again this year.

“Our volunteers are available around the clock to listen to anyone who needs support this Brew Monday and every other day of the year, 24/7.”

The Brew Monday support comes as part of the rail industry’s suicide prevention programme and partnership with Network Rail.

Samaritans has worked in partnership with the rail industry and British Transport Police to reduce suicides on the railway for over 10 years and has trained over 28,000 rail and BTP staff to look out for passengers and make conversation if they feel someone might be vulnerable. 

Anyone can contact Samaritans, free, any time from any phone on 116 123, or email [email protected] or visit www.samaritans.org

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