• linda9729

Follow up Mental Health Literacy Idea

Reducing Stigma and Improving Resiliency

Often the biggest and hardest step to getting help is the first one. Not knowing when to reach out or what to expect makes finding the right supports daunting and is a huge deterrent for communities where independence and self reliance are common denominators like farming. Talking about mental health concerns in ways that participants can relate goes along way to reducing stigma and building resilience in farm communities.

The "In the Know" farm mental health literacy events taking place in Alberta, offer a nice introduction to the farm mental health topic, and open the door for further engagement. A nice follow up event that has been tried by a few local associations is an "Ask a Psychologist" event.

For these events participants listen to a psychologist talking about a specific topic and then the floor is opened up for participants to ask questions. Past events have been facilitated by volunteers from the Psychologists' Association of Alberta, arranged by contacting the PAA directly. Feedback about the events indicates that participants have an increased level comfort with what to expect from an appointment with a psychologist and are more likely to reach out for help when needed.

The "In the Know" farm mental health literacy program being offered by AgSafe Alberta is one example of a program that is designed specifically to reduce stigma and increase engagement with Canadian farm families. These events are slated to run in Alberta over the next two years and any association, municipality or interested partners that would like to see an "In the Know" event in their community is encouraged to reach out to AgSafe by email at info@agsafeab.ca . Some virtual and in person events have already been scheduled and can be found on the Alberta In the Know website.

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