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.
In response to this additional uncertainty, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach will be offering seven online “Question. Persuade. Refer.” programs beginning Tuesday, April 14, said David Brown, behavioral health specialist with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. QPR is a suicide prevention program that teaches participants three steps to help save a life from suicide.
“Just as people trained in CPR and the Heimlich maneuver help save thousands of lives each year, people trained in QPR learn how to recognize the warning signs of a suicide crisis and how to question, persuade and refer someone to help,” Brown explained.
ISU Extension and Outreach will offer QPR at a variety of dates and times to meet the busy schedules of the agribusiness community. Each program will last for one hour. Those dates and times are as follows:
- Tuesday, April 14, at 12 p.m.
- Wednesday, April 15 at 10 a.m.
- Tuesday, April 21 at 12 p.m.
- Tuesday, April 28 at 12 p.m.
- Wednesday, April 29 at 10 a.m.
- Tuesday, May 5 at 12 p.m.
- Wednesday, May 6 at 10 a.m.
Agribusiness professionals, agriculture lenders and bankers, veterinarians, vet techs, commodity group members and producers can register at no cost for any of these programs. To register, go to https://www.extension.iastate.edu/humansciences/QPR. These programs will be offered online via Zoom at https://iastate.zoom.us/j/6904548582. For more information, feel free to contact David Brown at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Iowa Concern, offered by ISU Extension and Outreach, provides confidential access to stress counselors and an attorney for legal education, as well as information and referral services for a wide variety of topics. With a toll-free phone number, live chat capabilities and a website, Iowa Concern services are available 24 hours a day, seven days per week at no charge. To reach Iowa Concern, call 800-447-1985; language interpretation services are available. Or, visit the website, https://www.extension.iastate.edu/iowaconcern/, to live chat with a stress counselor one-on-one in a secure environment. Or, email an expert regarding legal, finance, stress, or crisis and disaster issues.
Finding Answers Now. As Iowans deal with disruptions to their families and communities, this website at https://www.extension.iastate.edu/humansciences/disaster-recovery provides information to help you cope with concerns about stress and relationships, personal finance, and nutrition and wellness.
211 is a free, comprehensive information and referral line linking Iowa residents to health and human service programs, community services, disaster services and governmental programs. This service is collaborating with the Iowa Department of Public Health to provide confidential assistance, stress counseling, education and referral services related to COVID-19 concerns.