AMES, Iowa — Farming can be stressful in the best of times. Financial worries, unpredictable weather, unpredictable commodity prices, plant pests, livestock diseases and isolation all contribute to farmers’ anxiety.
And now Iowa’s rural communities and families are coping with the unpredictability and imposed isolation produced by the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the destruction from the derecho that swept through Iowa.
In response to this additional stress, Iowa State University Extension, in collaboration with COVID Recovery Iowa, will offer 10 online “Stress on the Farm: Strategies That Help” programs, David Brown, behavioral health specialist with Iowa State University Extension, said in a news release.
“While our agricultural community has been impacted by COVID-19, many have now experienced extreme losses of their crops, buildings, storage and other hardships that came with the storm,” Brown said.
“This is all additional stress that is impacting our agricultural community and it’s important we’re all aware of the signs of stress for ourselves and so that we can be of help to our neighbors.”
ISU Extension will offer the program at various dates and times to meet the busy schedules of those in the agricultural community. Each program will last for 30 minutes on the following dates and times:
- Tuesday, Sept. 8, 3:30 p.m.
- Friday, Sept. 11, 10:30 a.m.
- Monday, Sept. 14, 12:30 p.m.
- Tuesday, Sept. 22, 6:30 p.m.
- Friday, Sept. 25, 12:30 p.m.
- Monday, Sept. 28, 6:30 p.m.
- Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2:30 p.m.