Farmers urged to ‘make the moove’ on mental health

A workshop has been developed in a community-based response to positive health and well-being for farming men in their rural communities in a new joint initiative.

Created and spearheaded by North Tipperary Macra na Feirme in association with Healthy Ireland, this workshop will allow farming men the opportunity and freedom to discuss and support one another in a safe and open environment.

The initiative is called ‘Make the Moove – Farmers Matter’.

According to organisers of the workshop, farmers may feel: isolated; anxious or weighed down with issues, both personal and on the farm; unable or unmotivated to seek help, or simply unsure of how to get started.

It is hoped the proposed programme will challenge farmers to think about how they approach their work, their own well-being and their personal lives.

“Farming can be a lonely occupation with little human interaction during the working day,” according to the organisers.

“Therefore, it is important to establish a network of support and provide an opportunity where farming men can help one another. While it can be challenging – and sometimes scary – to speak up; it does help.”

To progress and further develop the initiative, farming men are invited to attend the upcoming workshop in Racket Hall, Roscrea on Thursday, January 24, at 7:30pm.

The objective of this two-hour session is three-pronged, namely:
  1. To work with farmers to find out what is important to them. Identify real needs, examine existing supports and identify gaps;
  2. To explore opportunities for action and develop resilience-based prevention initiatives;
  3. To support the development of social and structural connections – e.g. Farmers’ Rural Network.

An integral part of the workshop will be farming men telling their stories of how they overcame obstacles and made that ‘moove’ towards good health and well-being.

While the focus is on farming men, the workshop is open to everyone, according to John Keane of North Tipperary Macra.

For those interested in finding out more about the event, further information can be obtained from Devil’s Bit Macra na Feirme members John Keane and Jonathan Dwyer, who can be contacted on: 085-7049175; and 087-6778938.