Mental Health Support for Farmworkers: Learning to Thrive

Farmworkers are vital to the California economy and the entire country. California’s 77,500 farms produce more than 400 commodities representing an estimated 13% of the agriculture products consumed in the United States. Despite the essential role farmworkers play, many face significant challenges accessing the care they need to stay mentally and physically healthy. In Coachella Valley, 32% of adults reported experiencing stress, anxiety, or depression. These challenges have only been elevated during the pandemic and can include:

  • Lack of Spanish speaking services,
  • Being uninsured,
  • A demanding work schedule,
  • Extended family care responsibilities,
  • Economic hardship, and/or the added stress of waiting on documentation

When a person lives in a state of prolonged stress and adversity it can deeply impact mental and physical health.

Additional Information & Downloads for Farmworkers

Mental Health is Just as Important as Physical Health
Mental health includes emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. We all go through differing levels of mental health throughout our lifetime, but when mental health challenges are persistent and interfere with daily life, such as work or relationships, it’s time to seek additional support.

With appropriate treatment and support, 70-90% of people report a reduction in symptoms and improved quality of life. This resource provides you with information on symptoms to look for, tips for self-care, and free resources to get help.

Symptoms of Mental Health Challenges
If you or someone you know is experiencing one or more of the symptoms below for more than two weeks, consider getting help.

It is important to note that only a medical professional can provide a concrete diagnosis.

  • Social isolation or withdrawal
  • Loss of interest in activities that are normally enjoyable
  • Increasing inability to cope with daily problems and activities
  • Dramatic changes in eating or sleeping patterns
  • Denial of obvious problems
  • Extreme highs or lows in mood
  • Feeling disconnected from oneself or one’s surroundings
  • Long-lasting sadness or irritability, excessive fear, worry, or anxiety
  • Delusions, hallucinations, or confused thinking
  • Many unexplained physical problems
  • Abuse of drugs or alcohol
  • Suicidal thoughts

If you need help, don’t wait, and seek help!
Making the decision to ask for help is not always easy. Many people hope that the problem will just go away on its own or think that they are weak in asking for help. Acknowledging a problem and seeking help is a sign of strength and courage and is the first and most important step on the road to recovery. There are tools that can help you recover, including medications, talk therapy, group support, self-assessment, wellness plans, and many other options.

Resources
Help is available! Find easy access to mental health and suicide prevention resources by using the links provided here.

If you or someone you care about is in crisis and needs immediate help, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at (800) 273-8255. The phone lines are answered by trained professionals; the call is free and confidential. If you need to be connected to mental health services in Riverside County, call the CARES Line at (800) 499-3008. If emergency medical care is needed, call 9-1-1 or go to the emergency room of the nearest hospital. You may also call or walk into a Riverside County 24/7 Mental Health Urgent Care location.  Whether you are in crisis or just need someone to talk to, all services are voluntary. Counseling and nursing, as well as, psychiatric medications are available. All locations are open 24/7 and everyone is welcome regardless of insurance type or ability to pay.

The following free resources and services are available in Spanish.

  • CARES Line: (800) 499-3008
    The Community Access, Referral, Evaluation and Support line (CARES Line) is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and provides screening and linkage to both Mental Health and Substance Use programs.  Calls are answered by compassionate trained staff who can provide information and referral in English and Spanish.
  • Riverside University Health System – Behavioral Health
    This website provides information about mental health and substance use services provided for children, adults and older adults.  A comprehensive service directory lists services for the Desert, Mid-County and Western Regions, as well as crisis lines. 
  • Riverside County Mental Health Urgent Care:
    If you or someone close to you is experiencing troubling thoughts, feelings, or behaviors, and you would like to speak with someone today, call or walk into one of Riverside Counties 24/7 Mental Health Urgent Care locations anytime.  Someone who has been in your situation and knows how to help will be there to greet you. Whether you are in crisis or just need someone to talk to, all services are voluntary.  Counseling and nursing, as well as, psychiatric medications are available.
    All locations are open 24/7.  Call or walk-in.  No appointments needed.
    • Riverside (Adults 18 years+)
      9990 County Farm Rd., Bldg. 2
      Riverside, CA 92503
      (951) 509-2499
    • Perris (Adults and Youth 13 years+)
      85 Ramona Expressway Suites 1-3
      Perris, CA 92571
      (951) 349-4195
  • 2-1-1 Community Connection: 2-1-1
    This information and referral hotline connects Riverside County residents in times of critical needs with those who can help.  Every call is answered by a trained referral specialist who will connect individuals with the appropriate agency providing the services and information they need.
  • Inland Southern California Crisis Helpline: (951) 686-HELP (4537)
    Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The phone lines are answered by trained professionals and the call is free and confidential.
  • NAMI Coachella Valley: (442) 268-7000
    Provides support and referral services to people in need in the cities of Banning, Palm Springs, Palm Desert, Indian Wells, Desert Hot Springs, Indio, Coachella, Salton Sea
  • ConnectIE
    This website is a tool that allows community members to easily find local services using their city or zip code. ConnectIE offers resources and programs to the public that are free or low-cost, like housing, food, health care, job training, public transit, and more.
  • The Trevor Project
    The Trevor Project is a national organization providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to LGBTQ youth and young adults, ages 13–24, over the phone, online and via text.

    • Trevor Lifeline (24/7): (866) 488-7386
    • TrevorText: Text the word “Trevor” to (202) 304-1200 to text with a trained counselor on Fridays from 1–5 p.m.
    • TrevorChat: Confidential chat service with a trained volunteer counselor available 7 days a week, from 12 noon –6 p.m.
  • Mental Health Ministries
    This website provides educational resources to help erase the stigma of mental illness in faith communities and to help congregations become caring congregations for people living with a mental illness, as well as their families. The site includes printer-friendly media and print resources that can be adapted to the unique needs of each congregation.
  • Parent Support & Training Program Phone: (951) 358-5862
    Offers comprehensive treatment and support to families seeking mental health care including parent-to-parent support, education, training, and advocacy. Services are offered in English and Spanish and are free of charge.
  • TakemyHand™ Live Peer Chat is an innovative technology solution born from the Help@Hand Riverside Program. It is a Peer-to-Peer live chat interface using the internet, where Live Peer Operators engage with community members in real-time conversations about emotional wellness and help chat visitors build resiliency when life is difficult. TakemyHand™ utilizes the practice of mutual Peer-to-Peer supportive relationships that are welcoming and inclusive. The Peer Operators have lived experiences and are Certified Peer Support Specialists who explore the recovery process for those who may struggle with emotional difficulties and/or substance use challenges. TakemyHand™ Peer Chat Hours are Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Fridays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

 

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