(Frontier Area Rural Mental-Health Camp And Mentorship Program)
FARM CAMP is a project developed by our clinic and funded in part by the BHECN Program (Behavioral Health Education Center of Nebraska). It is intended to identify and mentor rural students who are interested in eventual careers in behavioral health or mental health. Our first one week FARM CAMP activity was held in Rushville, NE in the summer of 2013, and we held our 4th camp this past summer! The camp has also been expanded to the Winnebago Indian Reservation, where Dr. Anitra Warrior held the second annual camp this year.
FARM CAMP runs for one week in the summer, during which students are able to meet professionals from a variety of rural behavioral health careers and learn first hand about these careers. They also take a class introducing them to aspects of psychology, mental health treatment, and ethics, for which they receive college credit. And, of course, there are fun activities for them to participate in during the off-hours. After the camp is concluded, students are followed by a mentor who keeps in touch with them throughout the year, answers any questions they might have, and helps hook them into the right education and career path. This project is intended to help with the drastic shortage of mental and behavioral health providers in our most rural settings. Currently 88 of 93 counties in the state of Nebraska are identified as shortage areas in these fields. It is also hoped that it will help to provide career opportunities to young people in rural areas, which traditonallly suffer from unemployment, poverty, and an exodus of youth (due to lack of opportunity).
Access a FARM CAMP Application here.
Because of the economic hardship of our area, it is our goal to try to keep this camp free to student participants who are accepted.