Leading trailer manufacturer MaxiTRANS has raised $15,000 for mental health awareness via a campaign for ‘R U OK? Day’. The company committed to donating 1% of transactions on the day to the cause, also providing much-needed recognition within the transport industry for suicide prevention.
Held annually, this year’s ‘R U OK? Day’ on 14 September encouraged people to ask friends, colleagues and family members ‘R U OK?’ to raise awareness for mental health and suicide prevention.
MaxiTRANS managing director and CEO, Dean Jenkins, said that ‘R U OK?’ stands for an important cause for the industry. “‘R U OK? Day’ promotes an important message – the simple act of asking somebody ‘are you okay?’, combined with genuine interest and follow-through in the response, could save a life.”
Jenkins said suicide was the leading cause of death for Australians aged between 15 and 44.
“The most recent data reports that deaths from suicide equate to around 3,000 per year, which is over two times higher than our annual Australian road toll. It’s an important issue that should not be forgotten as an industry when we are discussing employee safety and wellbeing.”
MaxiTRANS Australia and New Zealand, its parts network MaxiPARTS, and Mildura Truck Centre outlets joined together to support the cause, with 1% of the purchase price from all new trailers or truck bodies ordered, and parts purchased from participating outlets, going to the cause. Almost 40 trailers were ordered on the day, which, when combined with a large number of parts sold, was reflected in the size of the donation.
MaxiTRANS’ donation of $15,000 will go towards R U OK?’s work in raising further awareness for suicide and mental health.
MaxiTRANS also conducted a company-wide campaign for its employees, which included staff making gold coin donations, being encouraged to dress in yellow, and internal events at every company site to promote discussion around mental health. Dean said that mental health forms a part of its safety programme, MaxiSAFE.
“We place significant emphasis on safety in our own manufacturing and service facilities as well as designing our products for safe operation by owners and operators. While the job is certainly not done as we work towards our goal of zero injuries every day, another significant aspect of safety is mental wellbeing,” he said.
“Most importantly, we should not limit suicide prevention to one day a year,” he continued. “If you see someone struggling, at any time, ask them ‘R U OK?’”