WINNIPEG, MANITOBA – October 31, 2019 – With crops still in the ground and many livestock producers struggling with feed moving into the winter after a record-setting fall storm, it is important for farmers to remember that they are not alone.
While the severity of the summer drought and wet fall conditions vary across the province, one common factor remains among farmers - everyone is feeling the effects. You must consider what is in your control and what is not.
“Weather is an unpredictable factor for the farming industry, and with extreme weather comes many challenges,” says Leanne Brackenreed, Counsellor at the Manitoba Farm, Rural, and Northern Support Services. “Everyone is running the same combine in a different field. Farmers have to remember they aren’t alone in their struggles.”
During crisis, farmers might look across the road and see a crop that is finished while theirs is still in the ground which can create intense feelings of isolation for many.
“The most valuable thing we tell farmers is that it is healthy to acknowledge their own mental health issues and to normalize the term in industry”, Brackenreed added. “Many farmers try to juggle current financial stress with planning prevention strategies for the future.”
While it is easier said than done, Brackenreed recommends dealing with one thing at a time. Prioritize what needs to be addressed right now and what can realistically wait.
The Manitoba Farm, Rural & Northern Support Services offers free, confidential and non-judgmental counselling for anyone who lives on a Manitoba farm or in a rural or Northern community. If you need to talk to someone, please call the line toll free at 1-866-367-3276 or 204-571-4180 or chat online at www.supportline.ca.
FSP was established in 2016 to provide workplace safety and health advisory services and training to producers. FSP is hosted by Keystone Agricultural Producers (KAP), however safety services are available to all farmers whether or not they are KAP members, and regardless of size and commodity.
For media inquiries, contact Renée Simcoe at (204) 924-6018