More than 40 people came to the Molesworth Public Hall on Thursday, July 27 to learn about current animal health issues and how farmers can deal with stressful situations.
Murrindindi Shire Council, supported by Shire Mayor John Walsh and Agriculture Victoria hosted the ‘Caring for Our Stock, Caring for Ourselves’ workshop to highlight the importance of animal and farmer health.
Principal Vet Dr Anna Manning from Delatite Veterinary Services shared some observations about stock on flood-affected properties.
Dr Manning explained current health issues in animals across the region and how to respond, particularly liver fluke, worms and lice. Advice on managing feeding regimes to minimise susceptibility to grass tetany was highly engaging.
“Farmer health is very important in both the physical and psychological sense,” Murrindindi Mayor John Walsh said.
With 40 years of experience specialising in trauma recovery, psychologist Dr Rob Gordon spoke to attendees about the effects that stress can have on the body and some of the signs to keep an eye out for.
As disasters tend to disrupt the usual patterns of life, one of the most important things in recovery is staying connected with your community. Another key message was that if situations seem so difficult that it becomes hard to make a decision or take action, it can be an indicator of ongoing stress.
A useful short circuit can be to make time for relaxation, pleasure and leisure.
“We know healthy farmers equals healthy farms, and vice versa,” Mayor Walsh said.
Representatives from RuralAid and the Victorian Council of Churches Emergencies Ministry attended. Mental Health Consultant Zoe Edmonds, who offers a free counselling service to small business owners, their families and their employees under the Partners in Wellbeing Program, also attended.
Ms Edmonds reported that trauma (resulting from a disaster) that is unresolved can lead to ongoing stress and impact physiological health.
This event is one of the latest flood recovery activities conducted across Murrindindi Shire, as the council reaches out through pop-up hubs and events connecting with communities to support the recovery process for all.
Murrindindi Shire Council is also attending the monthly Yea Cattle Sales at the Yea Saleyards to offer information and support to farmers.
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“Supporting farmers and their farms to bounce back after the floods is essential for our community to grow and prosper,” Mayor Walsh said.