Bright Bares All For Mental Health

January 4, 2018, by Will Ziebell

Bright Bares All For Mental Health

By shedding their clothes and taking part in some of their favourite outdoor pursuits sans protection, Bright Brewery’s staff is looking to raise money and much needed awareness around issues surrounding body image and mental health.

Posing throughout the brewery and across the scenic landscapes of Victoria’s High Country, the “Bits of Bright” calendar features the brewery’s staff enjoying nature in their most natural state. All money raised by the calendar will be given to Beyond Blue’s research and outreach programs for issues surrounding body image, anxiety and depression.

It’s an idea which isn’t just about raising funds (and possibly a few eyebrows), however, but also looks to encourage positive conversations about body image and mental health, something brewery marketing manager James Davidson says staff felt was particularly necessary at this time of year.

“Working in a high intensity hospitality environment – as well in a brewery manufacturing environment – we are definitely aware of mental health and our staff,” he says.

“It’s our highest pressure time of the year. We get very crowded at times and have got bar staff who are dealing with all types of customers who have all types of demands and requests, so the pressure is on.”

Furthermore, in this sunburnt country, the warmer weather can also contribute to a more stressful time for brewers as they attempt to keep up with increased demand for beer over summer in often searing heat. 

Bright Brewery's staff – unfiltered.

Mental health in the beer industry has recently received much-needed attention both in Australia and elsewhere, in no small part thanks to an article in Good Beer Hunting by Luke Robertson last year. At Bright, the calendar is just the latest step its taken in that area. Recently, the brewery’s management team completed a Mental Health first aid course to become more aware of mental health concerns within the workplace and better equipped to handle them.  

“It’s very much about giving you those basic tools to approach someone, talk to someone and know what the options are in dealing with mental health,” James says. "It’s really about the steps to follow to approach that person and really understand where they are at and to help get them into professional help.

“The fact management were doing the training and discussing it with our staff led to conversations within our staff about mental health – which was fantastic.”

It was only a few weeks before Christmas, during such a conversation over Friday staff drinks, that the idea of a nude calendar was born. A few members of the Bright team leapt at the idea and found no shortage of staff willing to become involved. Those featured include the brewery’s owner and founder Scott Brandon, with a few members of staff making rather more appearances than others.

“There were certainly people who were keener than others to do it," says James.

The calendar can be purchase for $30 from Bright Brewery’s bar or via its website.

For more information or support surrounding mental health issues, you can contact:

About the author: Will Ziebell is a history graduate who finds the greatest use for his degree is telling anecdotes to anyone who will listen. Often they involve beer, especially when hosting Melbourne Brewery Tours. He can be found on Instagram and Twitter.

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