PE Ledger

Saturday, December 2, 2023

Mental health literacy program seeks to help P.E.I. farmers


Key takeaways: 

  • Program set by university researchers and explicitly tailored for the agricultural industry.
  • The farm sector’s mental health internship program expects to support P.E.I. farmers open up about their efforts.

Mental health literacy program: 

A mental health training program developed especially for the agricultural sector wishes to give P.E.I. farmers the faith to open up their works.

Experimenters at the University of Guelph, the Ontario Veterinary College, created the “In the Know” mental health literacy program for farmworkers, once offered to growers in Ontario and Manitoba.

The first training session for P.E.I. will be kept for free through Zoom on Monday to a fixed number of participants.

The program’s purpose is to introduce individuals in the farming community to identify when they’re working with their mental health and talk about it to their counterparts.

Connolly Aziz, with the P.E.I. Alliance for Mental Health stated the program’s launch is “very timely,” as the prohibition on P.E.I. potato exports to the U.S. persists in taking a financial and psychological toll on agriculturalists.

Also read: Fire destroys Summerside fish market

Farmers of PEI to be helped by Mental Health literacy program

“We’re expecting people can take away a competence of realizing what mental health work looks like, building competence and talking to others regarding mental health,” he said. 

“Just being relaxed talking to people regarding their efforts and identifying those mental health signs that someone might be in pain.” Aziz said the people offering the program are growers who’ve been matched with mental health experts.

“That will just actually give farmers the power to talk about the unique efforts that they have with people who understand,” he stated.

The program is simply one of a series of supports that have been made available for farmers working with mental health problems. 

Since its beginning, the Farmers Assistance Program has offered confidential counseling services to hundreds of Island farmers and their households.

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