Cultivating Resilience

Cultivemos (Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Network—Northeast)

If you’re a farmer, you know the joy of working the land: the cadence of the seasons, the understanding of the natural world, the tangible results of your hard work. But you probably also know how stressful it can be. From family and finance pressures, to isolation and an exhausting job that has no days off. In fact, agricultural workers experience suicide rates 50% higher than the national average, and that number is rising. On Cultivating Resilience from Cultivemos (FRSAN-NE), farm care starts with self-care. We’ll hear from real, independent farmers on the struggles they face every day, and how they are overcoming them. We’ll provide resources to strengthen your mental health and survive uncertain times. And we’re building a community where farmers and ranchers can support each other, because even the hardiest plants need the right conditions to grow. Together we’ll discuss the specific stresses that farmers face—things like family farm succession, economic burdens, and rural isolation. Follow the show wherever you get your podcasts, so you never miss an episode. And please, share the show with someone you think it may help.

E6: Resilience
Jul 27 2022
E6: Resilience
Cultivating Resilience—it’s our title, and the goal for this podcast: to help our listeners develop mental resilience. But what is resilience? And how do you get it?Over the course of this season, we’ve covered specific stressors and the skills that can help you manage and overcome them. But for our final episode, we’re zooming out and addressing resilience generally. Because strong people aren’t born, they’re made—which means you can learn and build resilience if you know what to practice.On this episode, we've got three different stories of resilience for you, each highlighting multiple ways of developing your mental fortitude. You'll meet a military intelligence officer, a pumpkin with a past and Louise, the 600-pound pig. Through it all, we’ll talk about planning, adaptability, purpose and the characteristics that define a resilient person. And our guests, Matt & Stefanie Barfield (Chesterfield Heirlooms), Jeff Sale (Centurion Farm), Anne Devin (Chase Stream Farm) and Rhyne Cureton (@pork.rhyne) will share the strategies that helped them bounce back from the challenges life put in their way.Join us for our final episode of the season, where we’ll share the roadmap to resilient living. Resources & Links:Chesterfield Heirlooms WebsiteCornell Small Farms - Centurion Farm Profile Maine Organic Farmers & Gardeners - Chase Stream Farm ProfileRhyne Cureton InstagramUniversity of Maine -  AgrAbility - Boots 2 Bushels ProgramCornell Small FarmsPsychology Today - The New 10 Traits of Emotionally Resilient PeoplePsychology Today - 25 Ways to Boost ResilienceFRSAN VetCo & University of Nebraska Bureau of Sociological Research - Farmer Veteran Survey Results ReportFeedback:If you have questions about the show or topics you'd like discussed in future episodes, email our producer, andrew@lowerstreet.co
Warning Signs & How to Help
Jul 13 2022
Warning Signs & How to Help
Content Warning: Discussions of suicide and violenceIf you are experiencing a mental health crisis, emotional distress, or suicidal ideation there is help available. In the US, you can talk to someone free and confidentially, 24/7 at the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline by calling 1-800-273-TALK(8255) or by dialing 988. You can initiate a free, confidential online chat with a crisis counselor via this link, or text the Crisis Text Line by texting TALK to 741-741.  Sometimes, stress can be overwhelming. It can feel like there’s no way out. In the worst-case scenarios, those affected can harm or kill themselves. Being able to identify mental health warning signs—in yourself, friends, and family—can be life-saving. So what should you be on the lookout for?In this episode, university extension educators Maria Pippidis and Jesse Ketterman are back to discuss some of the telltale signs that someone might be struggling across four categories: physical, emotional, environmental, and relational. Meanwhile, Keith Ohlinger, owner of Porch View Farm in Maryland, shares his experience dealing with stress, both in himself and his community. We’ll also cover how to open a conversation with someone who’s struggling, and what you can do to help them get back to a manageable place with their mental health. We’ll dispel some of the myths about suicide and share some common-sense solutions, even when those you’re reaching out to are reluctant to accept help.Join us, as we learn how to look out for our loved ones and be there for each other.Resources & Links:·      Suicide Prevention Lifeline Website·      Suicide Prevention Lifeline Chat·      American Foundation for Suicide Prevention - Resources·      AFSP – What to do when someone is at risk·      AFSP – If someone tells you they’re thinking about suicide·      Suicide Prevention Resource Center – Warning Signs·      Porch View Farm·      University of Maryland – Extension·      University of Delaware – Extension     Feedback:If you have questions about the show or topics you'd like discussed in future episodes, email our producer, andrew@lowerstreet.co
Succession — Legacy
Jun 29 2022
Succession — Legacy
Succession isn’t just about passing down the farm. Because whether you realize it or not, your successors will inherit more than the land you give them. They’re getting the legacy you left behind, and if they’re your children, a lifetime of the values you’ve imparted to them. Which is why any discussion of succession starts well before you’re ready to retire.Of course, many farms are passed down within family, which presents its own challenges. Farming with family blurs the lines between business and personal, and how you incorporate your kids into your farm life will go a long way into whether they’re ready or even willing to take over farm duties. Many of the stresses we hear from farmers around this stem from fundamental questions: Did I raise my children the right way? Did I farm the right way? Does it all end with me? Succession is where the rubber meets the road on a lot of these big issues, and so on this episode, we’ll cover all of it: the trials and triumphs of family farming, living your values, and the process of passing on a farm you’re proud of. You’ll hear from Thelma Kiernan of Kiernan Farm, who’s preparing to pass on her grass-fed beef operation, and sisters Candice White and Amanda Dotterer Condo of Dotterer Dairy, who were raised on and have since inherited a 3rd-generation dairy farm. Join us as we put the success into succession.Resources & Links:·      Kiernan Farm·      Kiernan Farm – Bruynswick Winery·      National Milk Producers Federation - Dotterer Dairy Profile·      Candice White TikTok·      Dotterer Dairy – Land O’ Lakes “She-I-O” Campaign·      Nationwide – Understanding Farm Succession Planning·      Farm Bureau – Complete Guide to Farm Succession Planning·      University of Wisconsin-Madison Extension – 10 Things to Consider for Succession PlanningFeedback:If you have questions about the show or topics you'd like discussed in future episodes, email our producer, andrew@lowerstreet.co
Community – Belonging
Jun 15 2022
Community – Belonging
Farming can be lonely. Rural areas are spread out and sparsely populated. You can be out in the field all day and never see anyone. Some farmers love this solitude, but that doesn’t mean they don’t need community. If anything, it shows that farmers need to be intentional about building community, because there's no built-in block parties or office water coolers in rural life. The benefits of having a community are massive. Communities provide access to shared knowledge and resources, not to mention purpose and emotional support.But for some, rural communities aren’t accessible. Whether it’s because of race, language, politics, sexuality, or any number of other issues, farmers might feel unwelcome or unsafe. Unlike more densely populated areas, their alternatives may be limited. So how do you find community?On this episode, we have 4 guests, each answering that question in a different way. Some are working to change communities from the inside, others are building new communities from the ground up. Join Wichie Artu (Magnetic Fields Farm – Athens, VT), Eustacio Mil Quino (Hudson Valley Farm Hub – Hurley, NY) along with Ashanti Williams and Arian Rivera (Black Yard Farm Collective – Sloanesville, NY) as we redefine community and rediscover what it means to belong.Special thanks to Zamir Bridgman and Jackie Lamport on this episode.Affinity Networks·      National Black Farmers Association·      Queer Farmer Network·      National Latino Farmers and Ranchers·      Northeast Farmers of Color NetworkResources & Links:·      Black Yard Farm Collective Website·      Black Yard Farm Collective Instagram (@theblackyardfarm)·      Black Yard Farm Collective Twitter (@blackyardfarmco)·      Hudson Valley Farm Hub Website·      Hudson Valley Farm Hub Facebook·      Hudson Valley Farm Hub – Language Justice·      Magnetic Fields Farm·      Wichie Artu State Senate Campaign·      Farm School NYC·      The Importance of Community and Mental Health – National Alliance on Mental IllnessFeedback:If you have questions about the show or topics you'd like discussed in future episodes, email our producer, andrew@lowerstreet.co
Climate Anxiety – Specialty Crops
Jun 1 2022
Climate Anxiety – Specialty Crops
The consequences of global warming affect farmers more than almost any other profession. A warming climate means increased droughts, heavy rain, unpredictable storms, and a fluctuating growing season, all of which can threaten a farmer’s bottom line. But climate change also poses big, existential questions: What kind of world am I leaving behind? Can we respond fast enough as a society? Am I doing enough?These connected worries all fall under the umbrella of “climate anxiety.” And it’s the combination of practical and existential threats that makes climate anxiety uniquely difficult to deal with. But it also means there are a lot of ways to approach it. Today, we talk to Wichie Artu (Magnetic Fields Farm – Athens, VT) and Dr. Nadine Burton (Tallawah Farms – Princess Anne, MD) two farmers who are using “specialty crops” to address a variety of issues presented by climate change. Together, we’ll cover how to mitigate storm damage, protect from crop loss, and adapt your practices to minimize your environmental impact and feed a changing world.Join us as we explore the ways you can regain control and find local solutions to a global problem.Resources & Links:·      Magnetic Fields Farm·      Tallawah Farms·      University of Maryland-Eastern Shore·      Dr. Monica Marie White - Founder, Office of Environmental Justice & Engagement – University of Wisconsin-Madison·      Collective Agency and Community Resilience: A Theoretical Framework to Understand Agricultural Resistance – Monica Marie White, Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, & Community Development·      USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture – Climate Change Programs·      Northeast Organic Farming Association·      Farm Bureau - Farmers for a Sustainable Future·      Farmers.gov – Specialty Crops·      Climate Resilient Farming Grant (NY Only)Feedback:If you have questions about the show or topics you'd like discussed in future episodes, email our producer, andrew@lowerstreet.coA podcast from Cultivemos (FRSAN-NE)
Farm Finances
May 18 2022
Farm Finances
Not many people get into farming for the money. But that doesn’t mean money isn’t important on a farm. Finances are the root cause of a lot of farmer stress. From high up-front costs to fluctuating commodity prices and declining farm income, the worries are real. But there are also plenty of funds and fundamentals that can help you gain control of your money and alleviate the mental burden of financial anxiety.In this episode, we talk to Valerie Woodhouse, social worker and owner and operator of Honey Field Farms in Norwich Vermont, on her own financial journey and how she addresses stress in her farming clients. You’ll also hear from university educators Maria Pippidis (University of Delaware- Cooperative Extension) and Jesse Ketterman (University of Maryland-Extension) on the essentials building blocks of healthy finances. Join us as we explore the green that doesn’t grow on trees: how to get it, how to hold onto it, and how to keep it from dominating your day-to-day.Resources & Links:·      Honey Field Farms·      University of Maryland – Extension·      University of Delaware – Extension·      Dirt Capital Partners·      Vermont Farm, Food, and Forest Viability Program·      University of Maryland – Beginning Farmer Guidebook·      Agriculture Risk Management Library·      Farm Services Agency·      List of State Department of Agriculture Websites·      List of State Extension Programs·      Farm CreditFeedback:If you have questions about the show or topics you'd like discussed in future episodes, email our producer, andrew@lowerstreet.coA podcast from Cultivemos (FRSAN-NE)