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Loneliness, social isolation and mental health in farming communities: An analysis of social and cultural factors

1 July 2020 - 30 September 2021

PI/s in Exeter: Professor Matt Lobley

CI/s in Exeter: Dr Rebecca Wheeler

Research partners: Farming Community Network (Jude McCann Co-I)

Funding awarded: £ 30,000

Sponsor(s): Loneliness and Social Isolation in Mental Health Network (funded by UKRI)

About the research

The research seeks to understand how social isolation, loneliness and mental health problems are experienced and managed within the socially and culturally distinct farming community. Using in-depth interviews across Devon and Cornwall, and working with The Farming Community Network and the Farming Health Hub, the project team will invite farming family members to share their own stories of loneliness, social isolation and poor mental health. The project will explore how specific aspects of farm work, life and physical environment can lead to, and are in turn affected by, such experiences, and consider how effective support provision for this overlooked social group can best be expanded.