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If you need help, please reach out. There is support for you. It’s natural and understandable to have a range of emotions at this time, and these may go up and down. This is normal and you’re not alone.  

Mental wellbeing affects our ability to maintain healthy relationships, do our jobs and cope with stress or anger. Sometimes we don’t realise how things are really affecting us so here are some common signs of mental/emotional distress to look out for in yourself and others. 

To find out what mental wellbeing support services are available, download our Traffic Light Guide  or pick up a copy from locations around the district. Designed to help you look after your mental wellbeing, the guide covers tips for what to do in an immediate mental health crisis (red), where to get extra support (orange), and how to keep yourself and others well (green).  There are also links to a number of online self-help tools you can use to support your mental wellbeing, including self-help tools for young people. 

Our friends and whānau can often provide support but sometimes it’s helpful to share our worries with a trained professional. Here’s a handy guide to assist you in finding the right help to suit your needs, plus some tips for what you can do to prepare ahead of your appointment.  It's totally OK to try different therapies – everyone is different and it might take time to find the right fit or combination for you.

More advice and resources are listed below.  For the latest updates on Southern Lakes region initiatives, resources, and wellbeing tips, follow our Te Hau Toka Facebook page and sign up to our monthly email newsletter

Wellbeing Guides over Christmas/New Year period

Services are often closed over Christmas or have an on-call roster so that our carers, who do so much to help others, get a break to spend time with loved ones and recharge their own batteries. Here are some key numbers and helpful resources if you, or someone you know, needs support over the next few weeks until everyone is back at work.

Queenstown Lakes mental wellbeing guide - getting help over the Christmas/NY period 2022-23

Fiordland mental wellbeing guide - getting help over the Christmas/NY period 2022-23

Cromwell and Alexandra mental wellbeing guide - getting help over the Christmas/NY period 2022-23

Mental health emergency pathways

Ring 111 if it is an immediate emergency.

Crisis Mental Health Emergency Services (SDHB) are on call 24/7. Ring 0800 467 846 and press 1 for Southland or 2 for Otago. It’s useful to have a support person/advocate with the person to identify any issues to SDHB staff.

Helpful websites and apps
There are some COVID-19-specific information and tools to support your own and others’ mental wellbeing and where to get help if you need it and you can also check out QLDC’s community wellbeing webpage or the links below for a range of great information.

There are also some great apps which can provide support and help you track your progress.  Here's a good overview.

National helplines
  • 1737 nationwide 24/7
    Free call or text anytime to talk to a qualified counsellor
  • Youthline 
    0800 376633, free txt 234 or email talk@youthline.co.nz
  • Lifeline
    0800 543 354 or text “help” to 4357
    24/7 helpline with qualified counsellors and trained volunteers.
  • PlunketLine
    0800 933 922
    A free 24/7 parent helpline and advice service available to all families, whānau and caregivers. Calls are also free from mobile phones
  • What’s up?
    0800 942 8787
    This is a nationwide, confidential counselling helpline for children and young people. Counsellors are available 365 days a year and it's free to call, including from a mobile phone. More information here
  • Family Drug Support Aotearoa New Zealand 
    They offer a nationwide 0800 337877 phone support service 9am-10pm, 7 days per week. The support line is staffed by trained volunteers. 
  • National Anxiety Helpline
    0800 269 4389 (0800 ANXIETY)
    A free 24/7 help line with trained volunteers.
  • Samaritans
    0800 726 666
    A free 24/7 help line operated by volunteers to support those experiencing everything from loneliness to despair.
Agency resources

Agencies are welcome to use the directories and resources below to help connect people to free support services available across the region:

Traffic Light Guide

1737 posters

1737 Queenstown posters A4

Child/Youth

New/expectant parents

Migrants

Business

Older people

Fiordland

Loss and Grief Resources

Downloadable resources from the Loss and Grief Centre
The journey through grief

Talking about sadness, loss and grief

Grief, anniversaries and significant events

Supporting someone who is grieving

Grieving when your loss is not acknowledged by others

Children and grief

Adolescents and grief

Helping teenagers grieve

Helping your child cope with the sudden death of a friend

Helping bereaved siblings

Stillbirth

Helping yourself when baby dies

Resources from the Loss and Grief workshop in October 2022:

1. The grief journey
Attendees learnt about why we grieve and how best to support those around us who are grieving. It included:
- A video presentation from Matthew Flynn, a grief counsellor from the Grief Centre in Wellington
- A presentation from WellSouth local Health Improvement Practitioner Lecretia Fietje on the importance of just being present and willing to listen in someone’s darkest moments through grief
- Local networks that support families who have lost a child as well as the work that Pauline Trotter from Compassionate Friends does in the area. 

2.  Loss and Grief of a baby/child
Attendees heard about how to support those experiencing child loss, including what other parents have shared about what worked for them. This included:
- A video presentation from Sands* counsellor Vicki Culling –The Grief Centre 
- Queenstown Sands Coordinator Natasha Murray spoke about where to find local help and support and her own personal journey losing a baby. 
* Sands New Zealand is a network of parent-run, non-profit groups supporting families who have experienced the death of a baby. There are more than 25 groups or contact people around the country.

3. Pre/postvention Suicide workshop
- Presentation from WellSouth Suicide Prevention/Postvention Coordinator Karyn Munro about her role and the local service and resources available in the Central Lakes area.
- Lisa Gear, Mental Wellbeing Navigator for the district, shared how to find supports and services  www.aoaketera.org.nz  www.skylight.org.nz.


Find out more about mental health services in the Southern region: