Serving Montana Agriculture and growing prosperity under the Big Sky

Montana Farm & Ranch Stress Assistance Program

Montana Farm & Ranch Stress Assistance

WebsiteBanner-Rain-horse.pngThe Montana Department of Agriculture understands that the producer is the most important part of a farm or ranch operation and will be prioritizing mental health among Montana’s agricultural communities through a comprehensive program aimed at alleviating stress for Montana farmers and ranchers.  

The Montana Department of Agriculture recently secured a $500,000 grant from the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Network (FRSAN), a program authorized through the Farm Bill to connect individuals engaged in farming, ranching, and other agriculture-related occupations to stress assistance programs.   

_5D39541_edited-2.jpgWorking in Agriculture is stressful—plain and simple,” said Christy Clark, Acting Director at Montana Department of Agriculture. “ Montana’s farmers and ranchers are carrying heavy workloads, braving the elements no matter the weather, not to mention taking care of equipment, animals, family members, and everything else that comes along with their work of feeding the world. Our department is excited to roll out resources to ensure our producers are taken care of first and foremost, because they are truly the most important part of their operation.”  

The Montana Department of Agriculture’s stress assistance program will include Montana-specific initiatives to reduce the negative stigma tied to mental health and connect producers with tangible, effective resources.

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Mini-Grant Program NOW OPEN!!! Application open 9/1/21 – 8/31/22

This program will provide grant funding that can be used to help pay for mental health programming, such as a speaker or workshops.
Sample Application  Click Here
For Guidelines Click Here
To apply on Webgrants   Click Here

Counseling Voucher Program – Coming Soon

To address the limited access to mental healthcare services in the state, the department will provide vouchers to Montana farmers and ranchers for free, confidential counseling services, both in-person and tele-health, to be provided by in-state providers who have ties to Montana communities and an appreciation for agriculture. 

Other Resources available

Western Regional Agricultural Stress Assistance Program (WRASAP)

Moore-Red-Barn-6305.jpgWe know that work in agriculture can be stressful.  WRASAP is a group of organizations and community members across the Western region who value the agricultural community. Acknowledging the diversity of the Western region and changing demands of the agriculture industry, we are committed to working together so that everyone has the right tools and resources to cultivate resilience. We believe that the unique needs of agricultural communities must be addressed. WRASAP focuses on communication and collaboration with partners across the region to offer funding opportunities, support in navigating resources, compassion, and education.

https://farmstress.us/

Montana Ag Producer Stress Resource Clearinghouse

_81A1934_edited-1.jpgCaring for a farm or agri-business is hard work.  Farmers and ranchers tackle the essentials of caring for and managing animals, crops, and employees every day. At the same time, ag producers often deal with work-related family dynamics, climate and seasonal issues, or financial stressors, such as changing commodity prices. MSU Extension has sought input from agricultural organizations, educators, health professionals and local Montana farmers and ranchers to identify the specific situations causing stress, and to put together a set of tools to help our Montana agricultural community better manage and cope with the stressors they might be experiencing. Our aim is to provide helpful information to farmers and ranchers, rural or subsistence farmers, in addition to their family members and loved ones.  

https://msuextension.org/wellness/stress-management/mt_farm_stress_clearing_house/index.html

 This work is supported by the USDA NIFA Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Network (FRSAN), from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

Contacts

Marty Earnheart
Marketing Officer
Phone: (406) 444-9126
E-mail: MEarnheart@mt.gov

Alicia Hamm
Marketing Officer
Phone: 406.444.5425
Email: Alicia.Hamm@mt.gov