The biggest issue facing people working in our sector is back and joint pain (according to the Perennial Health & Wellbeing Survey 2021).
Perennial, the charity for people working in, or retired from, the horticulture industry, has launched a free physiotherapy service. Following a trial period, the service, delivered in partnership with leading community services healthcare provider Connect Health, will help to build better futures for people in horticulture and their families.
According to the Perennial Health & Wellbeing Survey 2021*, 78% of respondents experienced aches and pains in the 6 weeks prior to completing the survey and 38% of people said they don’t seek help when something isn’t right with their body. This issue is compounded further as 27% of people have worked whilst physically or mentally unfit in the last 12 months.
The charity is encouraging anyone in the sector who is experiencing aches and pains to contact the Perennial helpline, where a referral to the free physiotherapy service can be arranged subject to qualifying criteria. By encouraging people to get help early, Perennial hopes to improve the physical wellbeing of those in the industry, which can also impact other areas of life including the ability to work and, ultimately, personal finances.
Once referred, an individual will receive a 30-minute initial consultation with a qualified physio via Connect Health’s PhysioLine service. The physio will then create a treatment plan for that individual, which could be carried out via the PhysioLine service or through face-to-face appointments.
Musculoskeletal disorders are the second biggest cause of sickness days recorded, after coughs and colds, according to the charity Versus Arthritis. As many as 1 in 4 people experience a musculoskeletal condition. Perennial estimates 75,000 people in the sector have or will develop a condition.
Perennial can also assist with financial support, benefits and debt advice, training and career support, mental health and wellbeing support, a legal helpline and support for families. If anyone working directly with plants, trees, flowers or grass has a problem, however large or small, they can pick up the phone to Perennial and know that the charity will make sure they receive the support they need – for themselves and their family.
About Perennial: Perennial is the safety net for people in the horticulture industry and is here to help individuals working in, or retired from, any job involving trees, plants, flowers or grass. Perennial’s help and support is free and confidential. The helpline is available on 0800 093 8543 and you can also visit perennial.org.uk/help to find out more.
* Perennial Health & Wellbeing Survey 2021 was carried out between May and July 2021 and surveyed over 900 people in the sector.
This article was taken from Issue 195 Winter 2021 of the ARB Magazine, which is available to view free to members by simply logging in to the website and viewing your profile area.