Vision has collated some of our favourite resources for FIFO workers, their families and partners to help with FIFO relationship problems.
Obtaining FIFO work can be an exciting and prosperous opportunity for individuals, couples and families.
Unfortunately the nature of this type of work can also present a number of psychological issues and risks for employees and their families.
Vision see’s many FIFO clients whose problems are exacerbated by the frequent absence from home.
Some of the most commonly reported concerns with FIFO work are –
- the strains placed on relationships
- isolation and the emotions associated with the “missing out” on events with family and friends
- the family or relationship responsibilities a person may come home to after working long or irregular hours and rosters
- being exposed to harsh climate conditions and ongoing travel demands that can take a toll on physical and psychological fatigue
FIFO workers are expected to have sustained concentration in high-pressure environments, and are subject to conjectures from themselves, family, friends and their employers.
Though the financial incentive of FIFO work allures many – the price of FIFO work can often be neglected.
With that being said, there are services, strategies and resources that can help diffuse the pressure of such intensive times and help FIFO relationships.
Below is a collection of websites and tools to help support our FIFO community.
Help for FIFO Relationships
FIFO and DIDO: Be aware of the risks
This is a great resource for anyone looking to get in to FIFO work and become aware of some of the potential risks that may be unexpected.
This website is also fantastic for people affected by the absence of their partner, parent, friend etc in understanding the general nature of this persons work. It can provide a little insight behind the potential ‘why’ or ‘what’ the person may be experiencing.
Key Findings from the WA Inquiry Into FIFO Mental Health
Adding on from Australia Mining’s website are the key finding’s report from the Western Australia inquiry into mental health.
This report is recommended for those wanting to identify the risk factors that may be applicable to their situation, as well as providing a little more insight for families who may not get to see what life is like up on site.
Mining Family Matters
A service dedicated to providing support for families in the mining, oil and gas industries, MFM is a great resource is a one stop shop for anyone affected by FIFO work, either directly or by the absence of a loved one.
Resources provided include: advice from FIFO experts, useful books, money matters, Facebook groups and synopsises of mining sites across the nation.
Employee Assistance Programs (EAP)
Many support services are not exclusive to just workers. Sometimes families are eligible for counselling with the cost subsidised by their FIFO employer.
Your requests remain confidential and organisations do not have to know it is you requesting assistance unless you chose to advise someone, in which you will no longer remain anonymous.
Vision offers EAP counselling which both employees and employers can access here: https://www.visioncounselling.com.au/eap-employee-assistance-program/
Mental Health Blueprint
Primarily designed for workplaces and organisations involved in FIFO or mining industries, the information provided in this handbook can be extrapolated and used as a mental health care plan for individuals and families affected by FIFO.
Much in the same way that we have emergency evacuation or first aid plans – this blueprint is great at creating conversation around expectations, realities and risks of FIFO work.
Communicating perspectives within the family can create understanding in times that may be strenuous or tense.
The FIFO Wife
This is a lovely blog for those affected by the absence of their partner, family member, parent or friend in dealing with the periods of absence of this person.
Written from the perspective of an Australian mum with 3 boys, this blog is a great resource for anyone wanting to feel a little less alone on this FIFO journey.
Deb provides tips on transitions of arrival and absence, answers FAQ’s and has a range of nation-wide resources for you to access.
My FIFO Family
For families transitioning into the FIFO lifestyle, My FIFO family may be just the service for you.
Providing resources such as calendars, books and activity packs, this service is dedicated to helping children better understand the FIFO lifestyle.
This FIFO Life
Are you a FIFO worker, family or friend or boss of someone who is?
This blog is a great website for general FIFO advice for situations at home and on site, with topics ranging from “How to approach your supervisor with a difficult situation” to “getting through Christmas”, this website also offers a newsletter subscription service that may help in reminding care to take care of yourself!
This is a great read in addressing the pro’s and con’s of FIFO work, common concerns and ways to access support organised by mental health provider Ngala.
FIFO Counselling for Individuals and Couples
Read our article – Do I need counselling?Article Title: FIFO Relationship Problems
Article By: Vision Counselling and Psychology, Perth, Western Australia
Web Address: www.visioncounselling.com.au/fifo-relationship-problems
Published: 06/06/2018 Image Reference: Adobe Stock