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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1959.13/40764
- Farm-link: improving the mental health and wellbeing of people on NSW farms: final report
- “Farm-Link: improving the mental health and well-being of people who live and work on NSW Farms ” is funded by the Commonwealth Government through the Department of Health and Ageing under the National Suicide Prevention Strategy to develop and test a model of suicide prevention focussed on pathways to care and appropriate for rural areas. It is coordinated by the NSW Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health in collaboration with NSW Health’s rural Area Mental Health Services and the NSW Farmers’ Association. It was operational from March 2007 to January 2009. This unique partnership between a peak industry group, NSW Farmers Association, four rural Area Mental Health Services, and the University of Newcastle through its Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health has enabled Farm-Link to engage the traditional agricultural workforce in high quality, focussed and relevant suicide prevention strategies for people who live and work on NSW farms. Farm-Link’s objectives were to identify target communities in collaboration with key stakeholder organisations through NSW Farmers Mental Health Network and Area Health Services, to develop Farmers Mental Health Networks in rural areas, improve access to effective mental health services for farmers and farm families and evaluation. Farmers’ Mental Health Networks, focussed on engaging both agricultural and mental health agencies in describing, defining and using pathways to care for farming people were established and expanded in Mudgee, Parkes/Forbes, Bourke, West Wyalong, Yass, Griffith, Inverell, Moree, the Upper Hunter and Casino/Kyogle. Improving the mental health literacy of front line agricultural workers was achieved through Farm-Link staff providing internationally recognised and widely respected Mental Health First Aid training to 220 front-line agricultural workers in rural NSW. Farm-Link established the conditions for successful cross agency networks to flourish in rural NSW. It developed a credible reputation in target communities and its staff emerged as service brokers, performing roles that included providing information about services, assisting with referrals, hearing of patient journeys in mental health services and building community confidence in making referrals. An external evaluation, including comparative service network analysis, has been completed and is submitted separately.
- University of Newcastle, Centre for Rural and Remote Mental Health
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