Farming is a job with a unique set of challenges.
Many are hard to predict or control. They range from climate events like drought and flood to fluctuations in commodity prices, changing government legislation and new technology.
Along with these external factors, come the demands of running any business – financial and production planning, managing cash flow, hiring and managing staff, succession planning etc. These pressures aren’t going to disappear so it’s vital that farmers develop the skills and resilience to cope.
Research shows many farmers are great at looking after their equipment and stock, but, like other NZers, they can neglect their own wellbeing. As an industry, we can’t afford to let these pressures reach the point where they damage productivity and affect the lives of families.
Farmstrong is an initiative designed to give farmers the skills and resources to live well, farm well and get the most out of life.
Here’s a handy introduction into some of the key ideas behind Farmstrong and how it works to improve the wellbeing of more than 20,000 farmers and growers every year.
This material has been developed to help promote farmer wellbeing in NZ and stimulate discussion on these important topics. We gratefully acknowledge the following organisations and resources for their inspiration, ideas and input.
Dr Tom Mulholland’s Healthy Thinking, The Power of Healthy Thinking, Champions’ Guide Material. BSS NZ’s Managing For Mental Wellbeing, Fatigue Management, the Australian Centre for Agricultural Health and Safety’s Managing The Pressures of Farming and various presentations, advice and literature provided by The Mental Health Foundation of NZ.