Coping with rural stress
Weathering difficult times
Extension's rural stress task force applies programming and expertise from across Extension to help families and small towns respond to current economic, environmental and societal challenges that overwhelmingly affect rural Minnesota and farming communities. The team works with state agencies and agricultural organizations as well as colleagues throughout the University.
Many Extension faculty and staff live and work in rural Minnesota. They respond daily to issues faced by the people and organizations in their counties. They've compiled the resources on this page to streamline access to financial help and mental health resources in greater Minnesota.
Need immediate help?
- National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
- Throughout Minnesota: call **CRISIS (**274747)
- Crisis Text Line: Text “MN” to 741741
- NAMI-MN Crisis Resources
Minnesota Farm and Rural Helpline is free, confidential and available 24/7. This call center is located in Minnesota. Calls are answered by trained staff and volunteers. If you or someone you know is struggling with stress, anxiety, depression or suicidal thoughts — call. Sometimes it's easier to talk to someone you don't know.
1-833-600-2670 x 1
Farm Information Line
When you call the Farm Information Line, you'll get reliable, research-based answers from Extension agriculture and natural resources experts. This statewide service is staffed by a network of local educators who deliver information to meet your specific needs. If they can't answer your question, they'll find someone who can.
The Farm Information Line can connect you to farm financial counseling. Extension farm financial experts provide free, one-on-one financial counseling to farmers who are experiencing financial stress.
Hours: 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.
Afterhours: Leave a voicemail and we'll return your call the next business day.
This video introduces mental health language. It gives case examples of "mental health" and "mental illness" and ideas for intervention. And talks about the relationship of mental health as it relates to nutrition, sleep, exercise, poverty, gender, etc.
Mental Health: Yours, Mine and Ours (00:5:46)
Resilience is the ability to bounce back from the consequences of change. It means seeing opportunity in change, not just loss.
These resources provide practical tools to deal with the stress of change.
Help for families and children
Losing a job or income affects all members of the family. Adults can become so preoccupied they forget that tough times have an emotional, as well as a financial, impact on their children. Children depend on their parents for emotional security. When parents are tense, upset and inattentive, much of this security is gone.
Family stress is often influenced or moderated by parental stress. It is important that parents take action to manage the amount of stress the family is experiencing. There are strategies that parents can use to moderate family stress.
Parents and stress: Understanding experiences, context, and responses (2015; PDF on University Digital Conservancy)