Ruralco CEO donates his bonus to save rural lives
Lifeline Australia is pleased to announce that Ruralco CEO Travis Dillon has donated his full cash bonus of $140,000 to the national charity as part of his personal dedication to stopping rural suicide.
Lifeline Australia Chairman John Brogden said the donation builds upon Ruralco's commitment to rural health and suicide prevention, with Mr Dillon setting a wonderful example for other CEOs and the lifesaving difference they can make.
"As far as I’m aware, this is the first time that an Australian CEO has proactively donated their full cash bonus, let alone in such a whole-hearted and pragmatic way," Mr Brogden said.
"Mr Dillon has gone above and beyond in making this personal decision to help Lifeline answer 5500 additional crisis calls. This helps ensure that no suicidal person has to be alone, and gives hope that many families, friends and whole communities never have to experience the profound loss of losing someone they love to suicide."
Mr Brogden said the national charity has strongly encouraged Mr Dillon to talk about his donation publically, not just because of the example it sets around CEO incentives, but because of the positive community impact it can have.
"To people in rural, regional and remote areas, this decision sends a strong message that you are not alone, suicide is a whole-of-community issue and we are in this together. This same commitment from Ruralco was clearly evident during the recent Victorian Dairy Crisis, with the company running a media campaign to promote Lifeline's services to affected communities and encourage those impacted to seek help," Mr Brogden said.
Mr Dillon, who approached Lifeline in February this year, believes Ruralco can play a vital role in tackling Australia’s suicide emergency, particularly in rural, regional and remote areas.
"We are not only losing our farmers but also the next generation of farmers. This is a national emergency but can be prevented by lifting the awareness, providing tools and training and of course reducing the stigma of mental health issues," Mr Dillon said
"The people at Ruralco are right behind this Lifeline partnership: raising funds and awareness; and being trained to spot the signs of crisis early. This speaks volumes about the culture we have and our purpose – we are here for Australian farmers."
As well as providing financial support for Lifeline’s 24/7 crisis support and suicide prevention services, Ruralco commissioned Lifeline to provide mental health and suicide prevention first aid training to its rural retailers across the country.
For 24 /7 crisis or suicide prevention support, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or visit lifeline.org.au.
INTERVIEWS: To request an interview, please contact [email protected] or 0408 407 376.