Mental health resources available for farmers and families

Published: Mar. 29, 2022 at 4:44 AM CDT
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QUINCY (WGEM) - Those at the Adams County Farm Bureau say a program that offers free mental health resources to farm families is a good tool to have.

Run by Southern Illinois University’s Center for Rural Health and Social Services Development, the Farm Family Resource Initiative looks to identify farm family needs, identify available resources for farm families, creating new resources for farm families and develop a network of partners to respond to those needs.

In addition to a 24-hour hotline, the program also offers up to six individual, couple or group counseling sessions at no cost to farmers or their family members.

Adams County Farm Bureau manager Shawn Valter said he’s aware of the program and said it is a good tool for farmers or families in need.

“It’s gonna give them just another resource that they can go to where they can feel comfortable talking with someone that kind of already knows about farming, already knows about agriculture so when they bring up something like high input prices, that person on the other end of the line is gonna understand the farmer and be able to talk to them on a level that maybe other councilors wouldn’t,” he said.

Valter said a number of factors make farming a challenging profession including it’s physical toll and fairly solitary nature.

“Agriculture in general is a high stress occupation because there’s so many things out of your control, but you need to try to control to end up having a profit at the end of the year,” he said.

You can reach the hotline by texting or calling 1-833-FARM-SOS or 1-833-327-6767.

Those wanting to learn more or set up programs as well can contact Karen Stallman of the Family Farm Resource Initiative at (618) 713-0759 or email her at

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