Free Mental Health First Aid webinar for farmers set for Feb. 27
Farming is a stressful occupation because of many unknown variables that farmers face - weather, market prices, crop diseases, insects, workplace hazards and the many personal challenges that confront everyone.
Consequently, it is not surprising that farmers are often at risk for mental health challenges. Studies have shown that farmers experience one of the highest rates of suicide of any industry, and there is growing evidence that those involved in farming are at higher risk of developing mental health problems.
The suicide rate among farmers in several studies has been reported to be from 40 to 200 percent above the national average, and during downturns in the farm economy, it is significantly greater.
This webinar overviews Mental Health First Aid, a national program that helps laypersons identify and respond to people who are showing signs and symptoms of mental illness or are experiencing a crisis - much as CPR helps nonclinicians respond to medical emergencies. Webinar participants will be introduced to the signs of mental stress and specific red flag behaviors, how to support a person experiencing a mental health problem and what steps to take until professional treatment is received. Participants will also learn how to earn certification in the program and how to bring Mental Health First Aid to their communities.
This course will benefit a variety of audiences, including Extension agents, Agrability staff and partners, case managers, farm leaders, service providers, health organizations, agriculture professionals, caregivers, first responders and the general public.
Webinar presenter Lea Ann Browning-McNee is the deputy director for the Mental Health Association of Maryland, the state’s oldest and largest mental health education and advocacy group. Prior to joining MHAMD, she was the outreach and development officer for the National Council for Community Behavioral Healthcare, where she helped lead the launch of Mental Health First Aid - USA and created other new education and outreach programs.
She has more than 15 years of experience in public education and social marketing and currently serves as adjunct faculty at the George Washington University Graduate School of Political Management. Browning-McNee received her bachelor of science and master's degrees from Towson University.
To register, go to http://sites.udel.edu/carvelnews/agrability-mental-health-first-aid-webinar/. The webinar is free, but registration is required. Registration is limited; early registration is advised.
Information on accessing the session will be sent to registrants by Friday, Feb. 22. For more information, contact Ron Jester of Mid-Atlantic Agrability at 302-856-7303 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.