Supporting Farm Families During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Farm families are gearing up for the 2020 planting season and facing new challenges and concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
New stressors facing farm families have been identified by NCFR member Rebecca Simon, M.S., at the University of Arkansas (UA). She has also compiled several tools and methods for farm families to recognize and manage their stress. Find them here. Additional resources for farmers can be found on the UA Division of Agriculture's Cooperative Extension Service website.
Information and advice to help farmers plan for and cope with the effects of COVID-19 has been assembled by the University of Minnesota Extension, including how the Families First and CARES Acts can affect farm businesses. Find these links here.
The University of Wisconsin–Extension (UW–Extension) has a website dedicated to helping farm families manage stress with free programs, including farm couples weekend workshops, how farmers can talk to their family about financial difficulties, and more. In addition, Renee Koenig, M.S., associate professor and family living educator, shared her tips on reducing farm stress in a recent presentation for UW–Extension.
University of Maine Cooperative Extension has a number of supports for farm families including a Farm Coaching program and resources around farms and farm family communication. The Maine Agricultural Mediation Program works with families on issues of farm family transition and conflict within families (among many other issues).
The Coalition of Agricultural Mediation Programs is a national program that members of NCFR may be interested in if they work with families in the farm or agricultural industry.
Finally, an NCFR policy brief, authored by Bonnie Braun, Ph.D., recommends public policy actions to invest in research to prevent and mitigate stressors; and encourage stress reduction and management from the perspectives of family and farm economics, health, and well-being. Read and share NCFR policy brief.
Do you or your organization have additional resources for supporting farm families? Please email them to Trip Sullivan.