Wisconsin Women in Conservation Announces Mental Health Support Trainings

CLEAR WATER, Wis. (WEAU) – Women farmers and landowners have many responsibilities such as being mothers, farmers and providing emotional support to their families and communities. Juggling all of these jobs can be a lot of work.

Starting January 20, Wisconsin Women in Conservation and Farm Well Wisconsin are hosting virtual two-hour mental health trainings to help women connect with each other and provide mental health resources.

Stephanie Schneider is the owner of Together Farms in Mondovi, Wisconsin. Schneider and her husband have been farmers for over 10 years.

She says she started farming with the dream of raising their children in a rural environment like she did growing up, feeding them well by growing their own food.

With all the responsibilities she takes on looking after them and sharing food with the community, she says it can be a bit overwhelming.

“When you’re in a farming situation and you have kids and you’re a direct marketing farm and a restaurant and you have employees and all of those things, you put your care and your love in a lot of different places and I don’t think you can run out of love, but I do think you can be overwhelmed by all the issues that can arise with just one of these aspects,” Schneider said.

A recent study by American Federation of Agricultural Bureaus indicates that 52% of rural adults and 61% of farmers/farms are experiencing more stress and mental health issues than a year ago.

Chris Frakes, program director at Farm Well Wisconsin, will facilitate the sessions, says these trainings will provide a safe space.

“So I think having a women-only space opens up a place where they can talk about all these layers and find other people who are like yeah, I get it, okay, I deal with similar things and we can help each other,” Frakes said.

According to the press release, the trainings are organized by region to facilitate community between neighbors but are welcome for all women farmers, landowners and environmentalists. Places are limited and registration is free. To learn more about the sessions, you can visit WiWic.

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