Vetlife has been picked as ‘charity of year’ by Vets4Pets colleagues.

Vetlife is an independent charity that started more than 100 years ago. Its compassionate volunteers, who all work in the veterinary profession, give their time freely to helping the veterinary community.  The charity provides a free, confidential, non-judgemental, 24-hour helpline, which people can either call or email, as well as a professional Health Support service and Financial Support for those in need.

Last year, the charity received more than 2,700 contacts (8-10 calls or emails on average a day) from veterinary professionals. The top reasons cited for contact include: stress, mental health problems, workplace concerns and personal issues.

For the next 12 months, colleagues from across Vets4Pets will undertake fundraising activities to support Vetlife with its all-important work.

Dr Catriona Curtiscorporate social responsibility lead at Vets4Pets, said: “For several years now, our Support Office colleagues have selected a ‘charity of the year’ to support, but this is the first time the entire group and all of our colleagues in practice and in our Support Office, have come together to support one charity, and we’re delighted that we chose to support Vetlife.

“Vetlife and its team of volunteers do absolutely brilliant and very crucial work. For me, there isn’t a more fitting charity that we could have chosen.  

“Mental health and wellbeing are incredibly important issues within our profession. As a group, we are dedicated to helping and supporting our colleagues and to foster open communications. With that in mind, Vetlife was the clear choice for us to support this year.”

Alison Clark, veterinary group health & safety manager at Vets4Pets and a Vetlife volunteer, mentor and ambassador, said: “I am absolutely over the moon that Vetlife has been chosen as our charity of the year, as this cause is very dear to my heart.

“Helpline calls and emails are answered by trained volunteers, and we are here to listen and to provide confidential and non-judgemental listening. As we all work within the veterinary profession, we understand and can sympathise and empathise with the situations and issues faced by those who contact us.

“The Vetlife figures so far for 2019 indicate we will exceed the number of contacts made in 2018, so we know this support is more vital than ever. There are signs that people are reaching out for support now whereas before, they might have struggled in silence. 

“I am so excited that Vetlife has been chosen as our charity of the year, and I think the money we’re able to raise will really help Vetlife to make a positive impact on those in need.”

Vetlife can be contacted on 0303 040 2551 or anonymous email via the website https://helpline.vetlife.org.uk/