KEYC - MDA Providing Crisis Helpline To Minnesota Farmers

MDA Providing Crisis Helpline To Minnesota Farmers

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After farming for most of his life Kevin Paap is no stranger when it comes to the pressure and stress in farming.
"When you're involved in agriculture you certainly have the weather to deal with. The weather can cause a lot of stress. We've got some lower commodity prices now. That adds to stress. There's certainly a lot of financial strain out there," Minnesota Farm Bureau President Kevin Paap says.

Which is why the Minnesota Department of Agriculture has launched a new Farm & Rural Helpline.
"We recognize that farming can be an extremely stressful lifestyle and business," MDA Senior Advisor Meg Moynihan says. 

A 24-hour service staffed by trained counselors available to farmers dealing with both short and long-term stress.

"Farmers who are in difficulty, might be in crisis or just be struggling with issues on their farm could be financial issues, stress anxiety depression, they have a resource they can call," Moynihan says. 

Especially during the months of harvest where unpredictable weather and physically demanding work can take an emotional toll on farmers.

"In agriculture, especially this time of the year, it's a great time for harvest but we've been sitting still for nine days with harvest delay because of the weather," Paap 

Whether it's reaching out to friends, family or even this new helpline, the MDA has made sure resources are readily available to Minnesota farmers and rural residents.

"We are working together to find ways to support farmers and help make lives better and empower them in that way," Moynihan says. 

Calls to the helpline are confidential and are also available to those who may be worried about a friend or loved.

Farmers and rural Minnesotans can call the toll free number as often as needed at (833) 600-2670.