Mental Health Workshops is now accepting registrations.

INDIANAPOLIS – To celebrate National Rural Health Day, Lieutenant Governor Suzanne Crouch, the Indiana State Department of Agriculture, along with the Indiana Rural Health Association, are announcing three new mental health initiatives designed for farmers and people in the agricultural community.

These initiatives, titled “Healthy Minds, Healthy Lives,” include community workshops, virtual suicide prevention training and a one-hour session for agricultural businesses covering mental health stigma and the resources available to help those in need. Each event is free.

“First, these initiatives will increase basic awareness of existing mental health resources in the agricultural community,” Crouch said. “They will also help identify stress factors, reduce stigma, and better address mental health needs within the agriculture industry. And by making them free and open to anyone, I hope many rural Hoosiers will join And learn to help themselves and each other.

ISDA will work with IRHA to help people who live and work in agriculture become more comfortable speaking up about mental health care options by conducting free, regional community workshops throughout Indiana. A conversation about mental health stigma and resources, as well as recognizing the signs of people in a mental health crisis, will be discussed.

“Indiana is a very rural state with a lot of farming and agricultural bases in many towns and cities. These workshops, agribusiness sessions and suicide prevention training are essential for these communities to recognize stressors, related mental health issues and mental health crises. tools that, unfortunately, can lead to suicide attempts,” said Cathy Walker, program director for the Indiana Rural Heath organization. “It is very important that we support our farmers, farm families, agribusinesses and Reach out to those providing services to the community.”

Community workshops and online suicide prevention training are open to anyone interested in learning more about mental health in agriculture, including farmers, farm families, agribusinesses, loan officers, religious leaders, rural health care workers, and more.

IRHA is hosting three regional community workshops:

Dec. 7, Ivy Tech, Logansport, 8-11am;

January 18, Community Foundation, Seymour, 8-11am; And

February 15, Firemen, Warsaw, 8-11am

IRHA is hosting three virtual online suicide prevention training sessions, titled Question, Persuade, Refer (QPR):

4 January, 8 February and 1 March. All three sessions can be attended at this link:

One-hour agri-business-focused sessions include educational sessions where an agri-business or organization presents their employees, board members or rural community members to mental health services and the stigma surrounding agriculture IRHA can host.

These sessions can be stand alone services or in combination with a previously scheduled meeting. Contact Cathy Walker at [email protected] to schedule a one-hour educational training for your staff, board members or others.

“Some of these community workshops were held last year, and we are excited to have them running again and running alongside the new programming,” said ISDA director Bruce Kettler. “Agriculture businesses are incredibly important and stressful operations year-round. Without their commitment to raising animals and growing crops, Hoosiers and millions of people around the world would not be able to eat. I hope these workshops, online training and meetings will help mental health can help reduce the stigma associated with HIV and show members of the rural community that help is available.

Cara Veale, CEO of IRHA, looks forward to the growing community opportunities within Healthy Minds, Healthy Lives programming.

“We at the Indiana Rural Health Association are thrilled to partner with the Indiana State Department of Agriculture to provide a great program and resources for farmers and farm families. We understand the importance of a healthy mind and want to ensure That we support our Indiana farmers and their families by educating them about the resources available and ways to ensure positive mental health.

Last year, ISDA received a $500,000 grant from the Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Network (FRSAN) program of the United States Department of Agriculture’s National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA). A portion of the funding was awarded to the Indiana Rural Health Association (IRHA) to reduce mental health stigma and connect individuals to resources.

To learn more, view additional training opportunities or register, visit


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