SA Agrifutures Rural Womens Award Winner Launches Pilot to Develop Farmer Wellbeing

Drought-affected farmers have the chance to access a new program which has been designed to provide them and their families and businesses with easy-to-use strategies to learn to thrive through adversity.

2020 South Australian AgriFutures Rural Womens Award winner, Stephanie Schmidt. Photo supplied.

2020 South Australian AgriFutures Rural Womens Award winner, Stephanie Schmidt. Photo supplied.

Designed by the 2020 South Australian AgriFutures Rural Womens Award winner, Stephanie Schmidt, the ACTFORAG program has been developed for farmers, farming couples and families and rural communities to build skills to manage stress and daily challenges.

Ms Schmidt, who is a clinical psychologist as well as a farmer, wife and mother, said she was aware of the challenges that farming, and life in general, can bring.

"I recognize my unique position as a clinical psychologist and a farmer," she said.

"I understand the challenges of rural life and the importance of looking after our own wellbeing every day."

"The program focuses on building skills in psychological flexibility, which in a nutshell, is the ability to be in challenging situations, step back from difficult thoughts and feelings, and choose to do what is most important to you.

For example this might be as simple as setting a goal to connect with your partner every day via a text message or phone call, even if you are feeling tired, stressed or frustrated."

The pilot will be held via Zoom on Thursday, June 11, from 1pm to 2.30pm, and will include another two 90-minute weekly sessions.

Participants will be required to complete brief evaluation questions and provide feedback and can register via https://events.humanitix.com/actforag-pilot-program or contact Steph at cultivatepsych@gmail.com with any queries.

Farmers from eligible council areas include: Upper North (Peterborough, Flinders Ranges, Orroroo/Carrington, Mt Remarkable, Goyder), North East Pastoral (Pastoral Unincorporated Area), Northern Yorke Peninsula (Copper Coast), Murray Mallee (Mid Murray, Loxton/Waikerie, Renmark Paringa, Karoonda East Murray, Coorong, Murray Bridge), Eyre Peninsula (Franklin Harbour, Cleve, Kimba, Streaky Bay, Wudinna, Ceduna).

The project is supported by funding from the Country SA PHN through the Federal Government PHN Program.

This story Program developed for farmer wellbeing first appeared on The Murray Valley Standard.