Latest News

Rural Support Trust sees nationwide increase in calls
Maria Shanks

Rural Support Trust sees nationwide increase in calls

Rural Support Trusts across the country saw an increase in call numbers in 2023.  Overall call numbers to the 0800 number were up 53% with areas hard hit by the weather events in the North Island receiving record numbers.

Rural Support Trust National Chair Neil Bateup says this is only part of the story, ‘The Rural Support Trust profile has increased in our rural communities and with our team often being well known members of their local community they are regularly approached directly for assistance’.  Neil says that they are also seeing an increasing number of cases come via other means with farmers and growers also reaching out via e-mail and social media channels.   

The weather events around the country in 2023 have had a snowball effect on many Trusts with little chance to recover from the January weather events before Cyclone Gabrielle hit.  Ongoing wet weather all through winter meant delays to the clean-up adding additional stress to farmers and growers. Northland RST Chair and National Trustee Michelle Ruddell noted that even now they were still seeing new cases coming forward.  ‘Many have not reached out previously but come along to an event and realise the support available and find the courage to ask for help.’

Whilst the recovery from adverse events has been highly visible during 2023, there have been other challenges keeping the Trusts busy.  Across the country Trusts are seeing a steady number of cases coming through where farmers and growers are feeling overwhelmed.  Whilst different sectors are facing slightly different challenges, there are consistent themes coming through with many farmers and growers citing pressures around staffing and financial challenges as impacting their wellbeing. 

The Farm Business Advice Fund which provided support to farmers under financial pressure received 157 applications from its launch in April 2020 until it’s closure at the end of 2023 with half of these coming in the past 12 months as inflation and commodity price pressures impacted many sectors.  Neil confirmed the Trust is keen to see the Fund reinstated and are investigating alternative funding streams to support the funding provided by the NZ Banking Association.

Neil said there are a variety of reasons people get in touch with their local Trust, ‘it may start as one conversation but as we peel back the layers there are often a number of factors impacting on their mental health’.  He urges people to reach out early. ‘We are here to help and the earlier we can provide support; the more options are available.’ 

The Trusts are the only organisation providing one on one support at a place that suits.  ‘It is easy to get buried in the work on farm and become isolated from family, friends and communities and we encourage farmers and growers to take a break, come along to one of our local connection events or give us a call and have a chat’.   The Rural Support Trust can be contacted on 0800 787 254.

Previous Article Better Hunting - Free NZ hunting essentials eLearning
Next Article New events announced for "Checking-in" rural recovery project in the North Island
Print
960

Name:
Email:
Subject:
Message:
x

More news...

Rural Champions - Nominations now open!

Rural Champions - Nominations now open!

Last year, the Otago Daily Times and Rural Life celebrated Year of the Farmer, a hugely successful initiative championing the work and community contributions of our farmers and growers. It culminated in the naming of Duntroon dairy farmer Myfanwy Alexander as our inaugural Rural Champion.
April 2, 2024 0 Comments
Te Ara Kōhungahunga | Early Childhood - Online Learning (The Correspondence School)

Te Ara Kōhungahunga | Early Childhood - Online Learning (The Correspondence School)

Kaiako (teachers) work in partnership with you and your whānau to create individual programmes of learning for ākonga, using the New Zealand Early Childhood Curriculum, Te Whāriki– He whāriki mātauranga mō ngā mokopuna o Aotearoa, and our local curriculum Te Ara Pounamu. All our kaiako are trained and registered.
March 28, 2024 0 Comments
Government announces drought support for Canterbury and Otago

Government announces drought support for Canterbury and Otago

The Coalition Government is expanding the medium-scale adverse event classification in place for the Marlborough, Nelson, and Tasman districts to cover the Canterbury and Otago regions, Agriculture Minister Todd McClay announced today.

March 25, 2024 0 Comments
Opinion : Are we doing rural mental health right?

Opinion : Are we doing rural mental health right?

In my line of work, I see people at their best and worst.

It can be challenging and gradual but being a part of the experience of fundamental change within someone suffering from mental health challenges, is the most rewarding experience I can think of.

March 18, 2024 0 Comments
Impact Report 2023

Impact Report 2023

What did 2023 look like for our team?

March 3, 2024 0 Comments
Need help in navigating ACC?

Need help in navigating ACC?

Way Finders is a navigation service for ACC clients. They can make it easier for you to understand your ACC entitlements and support you on your ACC journey. ​

February 23, 2024 0 Comments
New events announced for "Checking-in" rural recovery project in the North Island

New events announced for "Checking-in" rural recovery project in the North Island

Several new ‘Checking-in’ events to support North Island rural communities impacted by last year’s adverse weather events have been announced for 2024.

Rural Support Trust sees nationwide increase in calls

Rural Support Trust sees nationwide increase in calls

Rural Support Trust National Chair Neil Bateup says this is only part of the story, ‘The Rural Support Trust profile has increased in our rural communities and with our team often being well known members of...
Better Hunting - Free NZ hunting essentials eLearning

Better Hunting - Free NZ hunting essentials eLearning

Hunting wild game can be a great way to learn new skills, shrink your focus, slow down and make an achievable mission of something.

Rural Support Trust NZ

With thanks to our Principal Sponsors
 
Thanks to our Time Out Tour partners