“When you think mental health, stop thinking mental illness.”
The Minnesota Department of Agriculture understands the extreme pressure farmers face today. To ensure farmers have access to adequate help that suits their needs, the Department of Ag. provides subsidized counseling for farms. Ted Matthews is the director of MN Rural Mental Health and is based out of Hutchinson, Minnesota.
Ted Matthews is a mental health practitioner with over 30 years of experience in counseling in rural areas. His focus for the past 2 decades has been farmer mental health support. He has been the director of mental health services during 5 natural disasters. Matthews provides outreach training and public speaking related to farm stressors, nation wide. He also has extensive counseling experience in the areas of PTSD, crisis intervention, family issues, suicidology and domestic abuse. Featured on the Huffington Post, MPRNews, CNN, AgriNews, Successful Farming, Prairie Farmer and many others, Ted offers his expertise to help the generation population to better understand the farming culture.
In 1998, Matthews began working with the Mental Health Outreach Program, which is operated through the Farm Business Management program within the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system. The fundamental goal of the Mental Health Outreach Program is to help rural people address the various emotional issues arising from a rural economy experiencing rapid change and the effects of increasing farm consolidation on both farmer and non-farmer alike.
This program is effective because a diagnosis of mental illness is not a prerequisite and no additional reimbursement for services is required. As the demands of farming continue to increase, the necessity for addressing rural mental health needs becomes more acute. Matthews continues to work in a plethora of areas from crisis intervention to helping farmers relate to their families and workers to better utilize their resources.
Ted enjoys speaking to groups about farming and mental health issues across the country. He also offers a wide variety of trainings on supporting farmers
in stressful times.
Some of the topics covered are:
He has been invited to speak at colleges, conferences, governmental bodies and local groups such as:
University of Georgia
Illinois Farm Bureau
Midwest Organic & Sustainable Education Service
Minnesota Association of Ag. Educators
National Association of Agricultural Educators
University of Minnesota
Farm Business Management Minnesota
Women in Dairy sponsored by University of Minnesota Extension
Down on the Farm by Department of Ag: Training Series
Farm Bureau Washington DC
Farm Service Agency
"If you decide not to call, you have every right not to call. Don’t not call because you assume I am too busy or something else. Don’t put it on me."
Ted Matthews 320.266.2390
25 2nd Ave SE, Hutchinson, MN 55350
Ted Matthew's Work as a Crisis Interventionist
Project Hope Project Hope II - Helped people through the fazes of grief when dealing with loss.
SIREN Wisconsin - Trained disaster responders and outreach workers to deal with the crisis and all it entails.
Brown County - Training for program officials.