Virtual mental health program will be timely

The Indiana AgriInstitute pulls no punches with a virtual seminar planned for Sept. 29. The title of the half-day Healing the Heartland program says all you need to know — Suicide Prevention: What to Know and How to Help.

Source URL: https://www.farmprogress.com/mental-health/virtual-mental-health-program-will-be-timely

TAKE MENTAL HEALTH SERIOUSLY: Here’s an opportunity to learn more about dealing with high levels of stress that may build up during these challenging times in agriculture.

Tom J Bechman | Sep 21, 2020

The Indiana AgriInstitute pulls no punches with a virtual seminar planned for Sept. 29. The title of the half-day Healing the Heartland program says all you need to know — Suicide Prevention: What to Know and How to Help.

Agriculture faces challenging times right now, and they’re taking a toll on both farmers and farm families, explains Beth Archer, the group’s executive director. The program is designed to help participants learn how to better help one another, she adds. In some cases, it may save a life.

The program begins at 9 a.m. EDT and concludes with a wrap-up at 11:30 a.m. Registration is $20 per person and is limited. Visit agriinstitute.org to register, or call 317-745-0947 for more details.

Jennifer Sullivan with the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration will be one of two featured presenters. She will discuss the Be Well Indiana program started in 2020. It features a compilation of resources designed to help Hoosiers stay connected and maintain their well-being. Learn more about the resources available and their impact in rural Indiana through her presentation.

Jennifer Brandt, director of member well-being and inclusion initiatives for the American Veterinary Association, will discuss navigating mental health, with an emphasis on suicide prevention. Suicide is a major public health concern and among the leading causes of death in the U.S. Suicide is complicated and tragic, but it is often preventable, she notes.

Brandt will address the scope of the problem, current research on what causes people to consider suicide, what other factors put individuals at risk and protective factors that lower suicide risk. Participants will get guidance on warning signs, behaviors to look for and how to get help for someone in a suicidal crisis.

This is the second annual mental health seminar sponsored by the AgriInstitute, Archer says. The first one was held in person in 2019. This year’s seminar was developed by current Agricultural Leadership Program class members within the AgriInstitute program.