Sunraysia-based service providers are invited to The Occasional Counsellor™ training which is specifically designed for people who are supporting farmers affected by the drought and dry seasonal conditions.
The one-day workshop on December 2, 10.30am-4pm at Agriculture Victoria Irymple, will help the participants manage their own stress while developing their skills in supporting others.
Clinical and forensic psychologist David Cherry said the session will particularly look at the impact of working with individuals who are exposed to chronic stress.
“We will discuss developing habits that are protective of the worker’s wellbeing, strategies for bouncing back from difficult experiences, the skills of the helper, professional boundaries and assisting individuals who are acutely emotionally distressed.”
He said many service providers are being called on to provide emotional support for farmers they work with and this session will provide them with practical ways to assist them.
Agriculture Victoria’s Dry Seasonal Conditions Coordinator Rob O’Shannessy said The Occasional Counsellor™ session has been run previously for dairy farmers in south-west Victoria and more recently by Murray Dairy, with positive feedback.
“We know the impacts of the prolonged dry seasonal conditions we are experiencing across a large portion of Victoria and the stress its placing on our farmers, their families and their communities.
“We also know that service providers are the people out at the farm, speaking regularly to farmers and sometimes they are the people farmers open up to.
“It’s a very challenging situation to find yourself in without any strategies or skills to help and this session will give people some practical ideas of what they can do,” he said.