Released August 13, 2009
ORONO, Maine – Farming can be stressful in the best of times. Financial worries, unpredictable weather, plant pests, livestock diseases, and isolation all contribute to farmers' anxiety.
To assist farmers and their families who are experiencing stress, the University of Maine Cooperative Extension has organized a Web seminar and assembled a Web page filled with a variety of resources.“The unprecedented combination of low prices paid to farmers for their products, bad weather, and plant and animal diseases have made this year very challenging for Maine farmers,” says UMaine Cooperative Extension Director John Rebar. “Independent by nature, farmers may not seek help in dealing with the enormous stress they are under.
UMaine Extension is getting out information that can help families realize that they are not alone and there are resources to consider.”The webinar, “Recognizing Farmer Stress, Anger, Depression, and Suicide: Thinking and Knowing What to Do Next,” will be held from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 3 and will be presented by Dr. Robert Fetsch. Fetsch is an Extension specialist and professor of Human Development at Colorado State University.
All agricultural service providers and farmers are invited to participate in the free online webinar. Registration information is available on the new UMaine Extension Farmer’s Assistance site at http://www.extension.umaine.edu/FarmersUnderStress.
The Web site also contains contact information for the Maine Statewide Crisis and Suicide Prevention Hotline and numerous other resources that are available to farmers and their families who are experiencing difficulties.
Sources: John Rebar at (207)581-2811
Jennifer O’Leary, (207) 353-5550
Aimee Dolloff, (207) 581-3777