Farmers constantly deal with situations that are out of their control, heavy weather, dairy payouts and stock illness. A vulnerability that doesn't weigh on the minds of many others.

It's been nearly three weeks since heavy rain struck the Hawke's Bay region where some farmers lost up to 25 per cent of their newborn lambs.

While attitudes of farmers generally remain stoic through difficult times, others have spoken out, saying that they feel forgotten about.

Spokesperson for initiative Farmstrong Gerard Vaughn, says it is important for farmers to help each other, along with offering advice and support, especially if they're going through difficult times such as the recent weather event.


"Through Farmstrong we're lucky enough to have a lot of farmers who share their tips, advice and the practical things they do.

"Farmers are amazing, they deal with so much. When they're surrounded by others, the situation is always easier to handle, but when they're isolated that's where the balance gets tipped."

Vaughn says the Rural Support Trust is a life saver when it comes to getting farmers through dark times, from weather, to stock loss or even just a simple conversation about their day.

"They'll do that one-on-one follow up with people and what we do at Farmstrong is promote community. Not only as individuals but also in groups."

After the Edgecumbe floods in the Bay of Plenty last year, Farmstrong hosted a comedy night to support farmers who suffered extensive damage to their land, crops, homes and more.

They'll be doing the same thing in Waipawa on November 3 at the Municipal Theatre.

"It's all about connecting the rural community and having someone to talk to. It's great to get communities together for social purposes.

"Strength and resilience is changing around these situations now, it's not about going through it alone and the message is now about connection and networking.


"Farmers are also relying on business advisors for professional advice, so I think there's a real shift in attitude."

Vaughn says even by having a conversation, other farmers can benefit from something as simple as that.

"It's like a culture change, these things do take time and over the past five years I think there's been quite a lot of progress. The Rural Support Trust has really helped along with the Rural Health Alliance.

"Farmers are starting to realise that the most important asset on the farm is the people that work on it. In the past they've been talking more about what they're doing to keep their stock healthy and machinery running and their grass growing well.

"The people side is starting to shine a lot more."