Families whose members work in the mining industry face certain challenges not common to urban households. In a large country, the worksite may be hundreds, or a thousand, kilometres from home. The mine employee may be gone for weeks at a time, leaving a stay-behind spouse to make all the child rearing and household decisions.
Any miner working in Canada’s far north knows firsthand the pitfalls of regular absences from home. So do the families of Australian miners, and it is from the land down under that a practical, self-help manual is available.
The book, called “Mining Families Rock”, features professional advice from a psychologist, personal anecdotes from mining family members, and simple tips for keeping relationships healthy and kids happy.
Within its covers is advice on staying connected when you work away, helping children of all ages cope, making the most of your days together, rebooting your sex life in a mining marriage, building a new life in a mining town, mine site etiquette, and what to pack for your first shift.
Mining Family Matters co-founder Alicia Ranford says “Mining Families Rock” has been carefully compiled, not only to help people through any challenges they face as a result of their work choices, but also to help people feel good about those choices.
“The mining boom offers great opportunities for families, but after six moves in a decade and eight years of fly-in/fly-out (FIFO) I know it can also put intense pressure on couples trying to maintain a strong relationship and raise happy, healthy kids.
“Great communication is the absolute key, and hopefully this book will start a lot of conversations on many personal levels,” she says.
The authors’ common sense approach to helping mining families stay strong applies to Canadians and well as Australians.
“Mining Families Rock” is written by mining mum Alicia Ranford, psychologist Angie Willcocks and journalist Lainie Anderson. It’s priced at A$24.95 and is available from the Mining Family Matters website, MiningFM.com.au.