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Te Hau Toka Southern Lakes Wellbeing update

Issue date:

Welcome to the first day of spring and Alert Level 3!  It’s also NZ’s annual Random Acts of Kindness Day. If there was ever a time to do something to brighten up someone's day, today's the day so think about what you might be able to do to put a smile on someone's dial.

As a community, we continue ride the waves of COVID uncertainty so, on behalf of Te Hau Toka Southern Lakes Wellbeing Group, we wanted to share some mental health and wellbeing initiatives to help us all get through together.

By way of introduction, Te Hau Toka was set up in response to community-wide mental health impacts as a result of COVID 19.  Members include the Southern District Health Board, WellSouth Primary Health Network, Queenstown Lakes District Council, Central Lakes Family Services, Tāhuna-Whakatipu Māori Community, the Southern Mental Health and Addiction Network Leadership Group, and the Fiordland Wellbeing Collective.  The group partners with agencies and networks to help co-ordinate an overall picture of ongoing needs which includes sharing wellbeing concerns, monitoring mental health service capacity, and working together on ways to tackle the wellbeing effects in communities.   By combining knowledge and resources, Te Hau Toka hopes to build awareness of services that are available, connect people with the support they may need and help them to stay well.

NEW! Traffic Light guide for looking after your wellbeing

Te Hau Toka has put together the attached ‘traffic light’ guide (designed to be folded into a brochure) to looking after your wellbeing.  It covers tips for what to do in an immediate mental health crisis (red), extra support (orange), and keeping well (green).  Please feel free to share this far and wide.  It’s available to download from the QLDC wellbeing page and the Southern Health website. Printed copies will be available around the district when COVID allows.

There’s a host of information about local health and social services online and we also recommend checking out the Mental Health Foundation website / Facebook and All Right website / Facebook.

NEW! Te Hau Toka Wellbeing Facebook page

Te Hau Toka has launched a new Facebook page today to share regional health/wellbeing news and tips with our Central, Southern Lakes and Fiordland communities.  Follow us @tehautoka.

Mental health awareness

We had been working with community groups and organisations around the district on a month-long programme of wellbeing activities but… sigh… COVID.  So, for now, those in-person events are postponed and we’re focussing on what we can do support each other at a safe distance. We’ll share more details soon about what’s on during Mental Health Awareness Week (27 Sept – 3 Oct).

Partner programmes

Mental Health 101: September face-to-face workshops have been moved to Zoom webinars. This Te Hau Toka MH101® course enables you to develop confidence to recognise, relate and respond to people experiencing mental health challenges.  Register now for the 3-session webinar course which runs Mon 13 Sept 10am-12.30pm; Wed 15 Sept 10am-12pm; and Fri 17 Sept 10am-12pm.

Lifekeepers online training course: This free evidence-based, clinically safe and culturally responsive programme aims to equip communities and whānau with the knowledge and skills needed to help prevent suicide. Register now.  There’s also a free community workshop at the Wānaka Library on 9 Sept, 5-7pm. Please register before the workshop to: or

Radio tips: Te Hau Toka is delighted to be partnering with Mediaworks on a series of radio interviews featuring local experts talking about how you can keep yourself and others well. Stay tuned to local presenter Joel Palmer on Queenstown 92.0FM, Wānaka 99.4FM, Cromwell 94.3FM, Alex 90.3FM between 6-10am to hear more.

Online fitness: QLDC Sport and Recreation group fitness and gym instructors are posting a variety of free workouts, stretch sessions and other great fitness tips on their Facebook page.

Online library access: Queenstown Lakes and Central Otago Libraries have heaps of online resources that are available 24/7 and absolutely FREE (you can even join either online or call the library to get a membership to access the services). These include eBooks and audiobooks, global newspapers and magazines, streaming free independent movies and docos plus other digital resources.

Storytime for Kids - Join QLDC Libraries this Friday, 3 September, at 10.30am for the Library Zoom Storytime. Suitable for under-fives, everybody welcome! Meeting ID: 874 1465 0073  Passcode: 623791.

Access and Choice programme – free and immediate: Experiencing stress, anxiety or sleep issues? ‘Here to help with the next step’ Health Improvement Practitioners (HIPs), Health Coaches, and Community Support workers are qualified health professionals with experience in mental health.  Based in GP practices, they can help improve wellbeing across a range of physical and mental health issues. For more information and locations visit the WellSouth website.

Counselling sessions for local businesses:  The regional Business Response Group (BRG) has a resilience initiative available called Take Stock. This involves 3 free counselling sessions for any small and mid-size enterprises (SMEs) business owner located within the Queenstown Lakes District. Confidential services are offered through Benestar.

To access this service contact Benestar (0800 360 364 / and quote the ‘Take stock’ program to redeem the sessions. As part of this, a free webinar is offered once a month to any owners, employees and family members of businesses within the Queenstown Lakes. Upcoming webinars:

  • Managing your optimism, resilience, and wellbeing – 7/9/2021 10:30am - 11:30am
  • Protecting my wellbeing and preventing burnout – 12/10/2021 10:30am - 11:30am

He waka eke noa – we're all in this together.

Kā mihi nui,

Te Hau Toka Southern Lakes Wellbeing Group