Employee wellbeing startup Foremind raises $200,000 for construction industry mental health support

- January 25, 2023 2 MIN READ
Joel Anderson, Brad Martin and Elizabeth Kirk
Foremind cofounders Joel Anderson, Brad Martin and Elizabeth Kirk
Employee wellbeing startup Foremind has raised $200,000 in Seed funding from early stage investor Skalata Ventures.

The cash will be used to improve access to mental health support in the construction and building sector. 

Cofounder and engineer Joel Anderson was inspired to build Foremind after a poor experience using an Employee Assistance Program (EAP).

Around 200 Australian workers in the construction industry die by suicide each year – more than from workplace accidents. 

Anderson said Foremind’s mission is to ensure businesses can provide quality mental health care and welfare to their workers. 

“We’re a generation of people who are hesitant to make phone calls,” he said. 

“So if someone is struggling with their mental state on top of it, the hardest thing to do is pick up the phone and talk to some stranger about it.”

People using Foremind can self-evaluate their distress levels by answering a series of assessment questions and also suggest steps for support. 

Anderson said that’s vital with mental health compensation claims rising by 50% in the last six years.  

“There are 66,000 small construction businesses in Australia, in which employee assistance programs are often non-existent,” he said.

“Foremind wants to make mental health support as accessible as possible for workers by making the platform available on any device, anywhere, any time.” 

The startup is already working with construction companies including Roberts Co, Intermain, Connect Resources and MAX Build. 

Anderson said tackling mental health delivers a better financial ROI for construction employers through improved employee retention and fewer lost working days. 

Skalata Investment Manager Tom Smalley said Foremind’s mission to transform mental health in a notoriously tough industry was inspiring

“The ‘she’ll be right’ attitude is costing our community hundreds of lives, and to a much lesser extent, billions of dollars in lost productivity annually,” he said.

“We look forward to the social good that can be achieved by putting mental health in the pocket of every construction worker.”