- 19 Oct 20
The Cowshed is aiming to build a new mental health resource website for professionals in the arts and entertainment industries.
The Cowshed, a free peer health and wellness support group for professionals in the Irish arts and entertainment industries, have issued an urgent appeal for €10,000, as they head into an uncertain winter season. The funds will go towards building a bigger and better mental and physical health resource website – which they aim to launch in November.
"Collectively we have all be through a lot – suicide, depression, addiction, loss and just plain old stressed out," The Cowshed's organisers reveal in a statement. "Simply put, these are issues that have been in the dark in our community for a very long time – and in Ireland we must evaluate our own local industry and seek to provide a supporting net."
"Despite being a community-drive industry," they add, "which voices deeply personal thoughts and feelings through music, art, poetry, theatre, sculpture, drama and film, we are also affected by the shame and fear that speaking out about our health might undermine our professional careers."
Since being founded in 2019 as a peer support group, The Cowshed offers several free services – including an online peer-to-peer support forum, a peer-to-peer interview podcast series called The Tech Check; and a unique, non-corporate peer-to-peer approach in directing members to professional services.
The Tech Check features frank conversations about the health and wellness issues that impact those who work in the arts and entertainment industries. The aim of the podcast series is to "smash the myths" and "show how many of us continue to hide, carry or work through health issues alone". The Tech Check currently has over 600 monthly listeners, after gradually building an audience over the past five months.
With the €10,000 the team behind The Cowshed are aiming to raise, they hope to "build a website packed full with relevant resources, where peers affected by mental health issues can access dedicated peer support and up-to-date information in an easy, familiar and simple way."
The funds will cover website design, build, hosting and launch costs. Addition funds will be used to craft bigger and better peer support heading into 2021 and 2022.