Suicide prevention program available to farmers, agribusiness this fall

Iowa State University Extension

Although Iowa farmers can get ready for fall harvest, the stress they may face this time of year can be harder to prepare for. Weather extremes, labor challenges and time pressures can compound financial concerns like lower crop prices, higher input costs and larger debt burdens. The stress can be overwhelming. In response, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach is continuing to offer virtual and in-person “Question. Persuade. Refer.” trainings, also known as QPR.

“QPR is a suicide prevention program that teaches participants how to recognize the warning signs of suicidal thoughts, and how to ask someone whether they are thinking about suicide,” stated Demi Johnson, behavioral health program specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach. “Participants also learn how to persuade someone to get help and how to refer them to appropriate help.”

ISU Extension and Outreach is offering QPR during September, which is National Suicide Prevention Month, and throughout the fall. ISU Extension and Outreach will offer virtual QPR classes from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. on the following dates: Sept. 7, 14, 19, 21 and 28; Oct. 3 and 19; Nov. 2 and 16; and Dec. 14. Private classes for groups of 15-30 participants are also available upon request. Pre-registration is required for all programs. To register, click here.

“We encourage farmers, agribusiness professionals and others to participate in the training. Those who have already taken QPR might chose to take the class again as a refresher. This offers previous participants an opportunity to improve their knowledge, skill and effectiveness if they need to respond to someone they may be concerned about,” Johnson said.

For more information, contact Demi Johnson at demij@iastate.edu.