Growth of the Farm Stress Line

By John McFadyen Retired Executive Director [April 2020] of Mobile Crisis Services Inc.

The success and growth of the Farm Stress Line is a result of the vision of Mobile Crisis Services Inc. and the Ministry of Agriculture. And is demonstrated by the 500% increase in calls to the Farm Stress Line since 2012. Our dedicated staff’s expertise in providing crisis services to rural Saskatchewan has created trust in the community it serves.

Partnerships were developed with Ministry of Agriculture, Farm Credit Canada, Do More Agriculture, APAS and Bridges Health.
These partnerships created awareness and further opportunities for growth for the Farm Stress Line. Our participation in agricultural forums like Agribition {Regina], Cropshere [Saskatoon} and other forums in Yorkton and Weyburn created awareness.

The media also played a vital role in bringing about awareness and reducing the stigma of mental health. The numerous media requests were welcomed and resulted in bringing about more awareness of the services of the Farm Stress Line.

During our last fiscal year 2019-20 the Farm Stress Line saw a significant community investment. CN provided funding for a Farm Stress Line website and outreach. Conexus provided a financial donation to Mobile Crisis Services/Farm Stress Line to be used where it is most needed. MNP partnered with us to provide intermediate and advanced mental health training for crisis workers. In addition MNP provided funding to update promotional material.

This fiscal year has been a challenge with organizations having to adapt due to the impact of Covid-19. The new management team and dedicated crisis workers have continued to provide services 24/7. I look forward to following the future growth of the Farm Stress Line while creating my new normal in retirement.