Mental Health Resources

At a time when many producers are making tough decisions for their operations, it’s important to take note of mental health in yourself and those around you. We all know working in the agricultural industry can be exhausting not only physically, but mentally as well. It’s more important than ever to make sure mental health is a priority for everyone on your ranch. MSGA has compiled some resources for suicide prevention for you or someone you know.

If you or someone you know is in immediate danger, please call 911


24-Hour Suicide Help Line:
800-273-8255 or Dial 211
800-628-9454 Spanish
800-799-4889 TTY

Montana Crisis Recovery Line
10am-10pm only

Prescription Opioid Help Line:



*As of April 2021, hotline hours will be Monday through Friday, 6am- 7pm Pacific Standard Time.
If you want to connect with a hotline staff outside of hotline hours, please fill out a form here.


National Suicide Hotline: 
text your zip code to 898211

Montana Crisis Line: 
Text “MT” to 741741

We’re In This Together.

Beyond the Weather

The “Beyond the Weather” Movement is about getting beyond talking about what is easy with neighbors. By sharing our own vulnerabilities, we can normalize the mental health challenges we face that are unique in agricultural communities.


Free Counseling Services Now Available to Montana’s Agricultural Community

Helena, Mont. The Montana Department of Agriculture and Frontier Psychiatry have partnered to provide free access to counseling for Montanans involved in agriculture. Funded through the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Network (FRSAN), this partnership provides a variety of services, including individual counseling, tele-health, and medication management, at no cost to the participant.

The Counseling Access for Montana Ag (CAMA) program was created to address challenges facing those working in agriculture and ensure that farm and ranch families are receiving the support they need when experiencing stress, anxiety, depression, or other mental health concerns.

“Working in Agriculture is stressful—plain and simple,” said Christy Clark, Director at Montana Department of Agriculture.” Montana’s farmers and ranchers are carrying heavy workloads, braving the elements no matter the weather, not to mention taking care of equipment, animals, family members, and everything else that comes along with their work of feeding the world. Our department is excited to roll out resources to ensure our producers are taken care of first and foremost, because they are truly the most important part of their operation.”

Frontier Psychiatry CEO, Eric Arzubi, MD explains, “Any farmer or rancher can tell you, farm life is stressful. In the last two years alone, our state’s producers have faced a pandemic, a worsening drought, financial pressures due to fluctuating commodity prices, labor shortages, and trade disruptions. We are excited to be supporting our Montana farmers and ranchers by increasing access to mental health resources no matter where they live.”

The program is open to any Montanan involved in the agriculture. Visit or call (406) 200-8471, Press 7 to learn more and schedule an initial appointment.

By Courtney Kibblewhite, Northern Ag Network, (406) 698-6932, [email protected]

Are We Tough Enough to Get Beyond the Weather?

Changing the Narrative on Rural Mental Health

We got a call this week from a friend and listener who said, “Maybe you ought to be careful about getting into this mental health stuff. My Mom, used to say, ‘buck up, buttercup.’”

Fair enough. There are days when we do have to buck up and go feed the cows in a foot of snow. And it just takes a little push to get us headed out the door. Sometimes we do have to “buck up” and do the hard stuff.

I’ll tell you from my personal experience that some days, my mind fights negativity that’s a whole lot darker than a bout of laziness. My inner dialogue will start chirping, “I’m no good. They are better off without me. I shouldn’t be here anymore.”

Now, that is hard to write because I know that’s not correct. That may be my mind talking, but I’ve realized that’s not me. I don’t know why my brain gets me headed in that direction, but I know those things are simply not true.

I believe I’m here for a reason. I believe we are all connected. I believe in God’s divine plan, and I know that includes me, even if I don’t know how.

For those of us that fight with our minds now and then, it makes me wonder: Is the problem really that we need to “toughen up”?

I can wrestle calves with the teenagers (though it hurts more than it used to!). I can move a portable panel all on my own (though I’d rather have someone on the other side!). I can get up before the crack of dawn and do whatever needs to be done in whatever elements the day brings.

For those of us born with the stuff of homesteaders and pioneers, we are born with grit in our blood. Imagine the grit it took to trail those cattle thousands of miles north on horseback. Imagine the grit it took to head west in a railcar through untamed country. You don’t have to imagine the grit it took to stay in this country, you can feel it.

So, are we tough enough to get into an actual conversation with our neighbors rather than just sending a text message? Tough enough to get beyond the weather to find out how they are really doing? Tough enough to share how WE are really doing?

I think we are. I think we can change the story for our kids: We are not too tough to need mental health. But, we are tough enough to talk about it.

Shoot, we’ve helped each other through winters, floods and wildfires. Heck yeah. We are tough enough to get “beyond the weather”!

Let’s go there.

*If you know someone who is feeling constantly down and unable to enjoy the things they used to, send them to to sign up for free, virtual, Counseling Access for Montana Agriculture program. Or have them call 406-200-8471 and press 7.

Courtney Kibblewhite is the Vice President of Northern Ag Network and her family has run cattle in Eastern Montana for five generations.


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Montana County Mental Health Resource Guides

By National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)

Montana is a big place. NAMI Montana offers mental illness resources guides to help you get in touch with the offices and services you need. They have contact information for emergency response, healthcare providers, and other helpful agencies in all 56 counties, from Beverhead to Yellowstone, in addition to general state and national offices and helplines.

Montana Ag Producer Stress Resource Clearinghouse

By Montana State University Extension

A statewide stress management resource, designed specifically for agriculture producers. Here for farmers, ranchers, and their families and loved ones. The goal is to provide you with the tools and resources you need to help you manage your stress and fine tune your mental health. Please use the site to discover local, state and national resources that will help ease any burden that you, or a loved one, might be experiencing.

Farm & Ranch Stress Assistance Mini-Grant

By Montana Department of Agriculture

This program was created to address mental health needs in rural communities and the agriculture industry through the use of mental health speakers, workshops and new or expanding trainings that support emotional, psychological, and social well-being. The overarching goal of the Mini Grants Program is to facilitate and support outreach activities by providing a range of services, including speakers, trainings, workshops, and support services that will directly improve agriculture-related stress and agricultural suicide prevention for Montana.