Latest News

High stress in rural NZ
Katrina Thomas

High stress in rural NZ

Story supplied and written by Peter Burke from Rural News

Rural Support Trusts around the country are having to significantly increase their staff to deal with growing stress in rural areas in the wake of Cyclone Gabrielle and other adverse weather events.

Chair of the national council of Rural Support Trusts (RST), Neil Bateup, says in the Waikato where he farms, they have had to increase support people numbers by 25%. He believes other regions are doing the same.

Bateup told Rural News the focus has been on getting advisors out to people to sit down with them and work out the best way to overcome the problems they are facing.

He says Gabrielle is the biggest event that RSTs have had to deal with since their inception in the early 2000’s and there are lot of people stressed for a variety of reasons.

“There are issues around feeding stock, containing stock, financial pressures caused by low returns and compounded by the cost of repairing farm infrastructure.

“As well, many are in a state of flux, knowing that it will take years for things to be returned to normal on their properties.”

Bateup says farmers who were planning to exit the industry, mainly because of their age, whose farms are severely damaged, are in a difficult situation.

“The timing for them is pretty horrific.”

He says another big issue is the difficulty rural people have in accessing medical care. Bateup’s heard instances of people having to wait up to six weeks to get an appointment with a GP and that there are equally long waits to get appointments with counsellors and mental health providers.

“That’s tough. It’s crazy – especially if you have a child that is unwell and having to get to a doctor,” he told Rural News. “The problems are compounded by road closures and roads that are under repair – with a journey that normally would take an hour now taking double that time.”

Bateup adds it’s a wellknown fact that people suffering from stress or mental health issues are prone to making bad decisions – both at home and in their workplace. He says RSTs have been organising events to get people off the farm to mix and talk with others in similar situations.

He says it can be very lonely on a farm struggling to overcome a multitude of problems.

“If people can get away from the farm and mix with others, that will help them cope and lift morale.”

Previous Article Tending to mental health on farm -
Next Article Treat yourself like you would a broken tractor, says Rural Support Trust
Print
683

Name:
Email:
Subject:
Message:
x

More news...

FMG Spot Check Roadie with Melanoma New Zealand

FMG Spot Check Roadie with Melanoma New Zealand

The FMG Spot Check Roadie kicked off last year and visited four locations around the country, for the full results.  And this year they're heading out again with their partners Melanoma New Zealand. If you've got a spot you're concerned about, come and see them to get it checked and receive life-saving information to help you and your family look after...
October 20, 2023 0 Comments
Surfing for Farmers recognised as Rural Champions at B+LNZ Awards

Surfing for Farmers recognised as Rural Champions at B+LNZ Awards

The Beef + Lamb New Zealand awards were held last night in Christchurch. The judges said it was hard not to give Surfing For Farmers a perfect score.
October 20, 2023 0 Comments
A Call Away - Shepherdess talk to North Canterbury RST representative Jen Le Pine

A Call Away - Shepherdess talk to North Canterbury RST representative Jen Le Pine

Long-time sheep and beef farmer Jen Le Pine, 50, fills her cup with volunteering in the Cheviot community. She’s an area representative for the North Canterbury Rural Support Trust, using her personal experience to help farmers like her navigate tough times. She chats with Shepherdess about the power of a listening ear and how locals help keep the Trust going strong.
October 16, 2023 0 Comments
El Niño Watch - Podcast Series

El Niño Watch - Podcast Series

NEW WEEKLY PODCAST!  Join forecaster Phil Duncan & Hawke’s Bay farmer & AgriHQ senior analyst Suz Bremner every week as they track latest developments with the El Niño weather pattern & what this means for you.  
October 13, 2023 0 Comments
Losing a loved one to suicide

Losing a loved one to suicide

Losing someone to suicide may leave you with lots of questions that are difficult or even impossible to answer.

October 11, 2023 0 Comments
Three great tips from Lance Burdett

Three great tips from Lance Burdett

Asking for help is a sign of true courage and strength, a true hero. It takes courage to admit that you don't have all the answers and that you need the support of others. Seeking help from a trusted friend, family member, or professional can make all the difference.
October 11, 2023 0 Comments
Surfing for Farmers 2023 - 2024 Season

Surfing for Farmers 2023 - 2024 Season

The new season is fast approaching, keep your eyes peeled for your regions start dates and times ...

Regional NAIT Support Sessions throughout New Zealand

Regional NAIT Support Sessions throughout New Zealand

Need a hand with NAIT or TBfree? Then checkout the closest NAIT support sessions near you.

New Drought/Dry Forecasting Tools

New Drought/Dry Forecasting Tools

A new tool created by NIWA in accord with MPI provides useful weekly and 35-day outlooks for dryness and rainfall based on meteorological data.

Rural Support Trust NZ

With thanks to our principal sponsors
 
Thanks to our Time Out Tour partners