Engage Aotearoa

Category Archives: For Parents

Taking part in the Mental Health and Addictions Inquiry

The Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction has been established by the New Zealand Government in response to widespread concern about mental health and addiction services in the mental health sector and the broader community. It’s time to have your say about what works, what doesn’t work, and what else is needed. Submissions are due by 5pm, 5 June 2018.

Anyone can make a submission to the Inquiry. Service-users, family members, and mental-health professionals have especially valuable perspectives to share. There are a number of different ways you can make your voice count.

  • Fill out the Inquiry Panel’s consultation document. You can do this online or on a downloaded form. The consultation document is like a short survey that asks the following questions…
    1. What is currently working well? Why do you think it is working well? Who is it working well for?
    2. What isn’t working well at the moment? What mental health and addiction needs are not currently being met? Who isn’t receiving the support they need and why? What is not being done now that should be?
    3. What could be done better?
    4. From your point of view, what sort of society would be best for the mental health of all our people?
    5. Anything else you want to tell us? 
  • Write your own submission and email this to the Inquiry Panel. They will consider all submissions received. You can use the questions in the consultation document or not, the choice is yours.
  • You can also provide your submission over the phone by calling 0800 644 678 between 9:30am and 5:30pm Monday to Friday. Someone will be able to talk to you and write down your ideas about how to improve mental health and addiction in New Zealand.
  • Finally, you can attend a regional community meeting to share your ideas directly with the panel. You can complete their Expression of Interest form so they can keep in touch with you when they have updates to share.

Contact the Mental Health and Addictions Inquiry

Website: www.mentalhealth.inquiry.govt.nz

Email: mentalhealth@inquiry.govt.nz

Phone:  0800 644 678

People’s Review of the Mental Health System

Share your story and help create a better mental-health system.

The people at Action Station have teamed up with Kyle MacDonald to create a People’s Review of the Mental-Health System. They want to gather together as many personal stories as possible, to convince our politicians of the need for improvements.

Their question to you is simple: what has your experience of the public mental health system been?

The public invitation goes on to say “Everyone has a story about mental health in New Zealand. Whether you work as a mental health professional, have experienced the mental health system directly yourself or someone in your family has, your story matters. We don’t need more statistics, the numbers already add up to make it clear that we have a crisis and need urgent action, and still nothing has been done. But personal stories can do what numbers cannot – they can move Ministers to action. Stories create empathy, and empathy creates change.

Find out more here.

Atawhai Festival at Te Pou Theatre: 5-11 October 2015

A new festival is seeking to break down stigma around mental health through performance and workshops. The Atawhai Festival coincides with Mental Health Awareness Week which runs from October 5 to 11.  The week-long festival will draw together 40 performers, artists and speakers to New Lynn’s Te Pou theatre. Festival creator Borni Te Rongopai Tukiwaho says he had contacts in both the mental health sector and in performance and thought “why not bring them together”.

“I work with marginalised communities and I see the stigmas that society has of mental distress,” he says,  “but also, the expectations people have of themselves and the unfortunate consequences from feeling that it’s not OK to feel less than 100 per cent.” Tukiwaho has teamed up with the creator of the original re-THiNK festival, Taimi Allan to Reboot the Big re-THiNK on October 6th.

Other events include a workshop from Jack Trolove on how to talk about suicide and mental health through storytelling (Oct 6th), a wellness workshop with motivational speaker James Rakena Robinson (Oct 9th), a performance poetry showcase called Purerehua (Oct 7th) and performances by top national and international actors.

Atawhai takes place at Te Pou theatre
44a Portage Rd, New Lynn from October 5 to 11.

Visit the Atawhai Facebook Page for information about all events.

Go to iTicket.co.nz to book.

Cacophony: Hearing Voices Exhibition 1-11 October 2015

Art and Sound Collide for Mental Health Awareness

Cacophony_2015

Experience a unique interactive installation, featuring local artists, real stories and experiential soundscapes. Immerse yourself in the sometimes painful but always hopeful journey to recovery.

When: Opens Thursday October 1st 6 PM and runs to Sunday October 11th, 10 am-4:00 PM

Where: The Upstairs Art Gallery, Lopdell House 418 Titirangi Rd, Titirangi, Auckland

Find out more on Facebook.

Mental Health Awareness Week Calendar 5-11 October 2015

How will you be celebrating Mental Health Awareness Week?

Activities run from 5–11 October, the week of World Mental Health Awareness Day on October 10th.

The theme this year is Give and the Mental Health Foundation’s calendar of events is filled with wonderful ways to get involved across the country.

Engage Update: New Resource to Help Teachers Talk About Coping with their Classes

Engage Aotearoa is pleased to announce the launch of a new resource that has been long in the making. The Coping Posters Teaching Resource guides teachers to use The Coping Kete to engage students with the static image component of the Year 9 English curriculum, get them talking about how to cope with the rough parts of life and share coping information among the wider school community.

Taipa Area School Static image Comp 1st Place Engage Aotearoa

Winner: Taipa Area School Poster Competition 2014

This resource was created in collaboration with Ilana Hill. The Engage Aotearoa team met Ilana Hill in mid-2014 at a LifeHack Weekend in the Far North. She was then a Year 9 teacher at Taipa Area School who wanted to get her students talking about safe ways of coping with distress and get them excited about the Year 9 English curriculum. Over the following months we collaborated to create a set of guidelines that would allow her to safely explore coping with her students. Students would create posters to promote positive coping and The Coping Kete to their community, while they learned about static images. The top posters would be shared on the Engage Aotearoa website and the school’s newsletter where they could reach parents and other family members as well as the wider school body. Students were excited to create a poster that promoted an idea that might have an impact in the real world.  The winning posters were published in November 2014 and posted on social media.

The Coping Poster Teaching Resource includes Ilana Hill’s original teaching inquiry, guidelines for teachers that set out how to introduce the topic in the same way, poster guidelines for students, coping poster planning worksheets, a practice analysis worksheet and information sheets that define different static image elements set out in the worksheet. These align with the elements covered in the Year 9 curriculum.

Download The Coping Poster Teaching Resource here

Visit Engage Aotearoa’s Coping Resources page to find The Coping Kete and the Teaching Resource together in one place.

Mental Health and Wellbeing of Young People Seminar, Auckland

Featuring leading experts in the field, the Mental Health and Wellbeing of Young People Seminar provides practically relevant information and strategies that can be applied to support young people achieve their potential.

Targeted at mental health professionals, teachers, social/youth workers, parents and young people themselves, the seminar features topics such as body image and disordered eating, video-game addiction, adolescent brain development, supporting young people with a learning disability and many others.

Date/Time: Friday, 28th August, 9am-5pm
Location/Address: Bruce Mason Centre, Cnr Hurstmere Road and The Promenade, Takapuna Beach
Contact Generation Next: Ph: 09 363 9697, E: info@generationnext.co.nz
For Further Information:  www.generationnext.co.nz/

Engage Consideration: Dutch initiative challenges mainstream thinking about psychosis

This post highlights a relatively new Dutch initiative that works to promote a helpful way of thinking about experiences of psychosis. The team at Engage Aotearoa recently stumbled across it on Facebook and thought it was full of information others might like to consider – either in their own recovery or in their efforts to support others seeking recovery.

Jim van Os and others have created a website, manifesto and set of audio-visual ‘explanimations’ to help people understand psychotic experiences in a way that allows for meaning-making and hope for recovery.

Much of the website is in Dutch, but an English-language version of the core resources on the “Schizophrenia Doesn’t Exist” website is available. It’s a provocative title, but the project creators do not mean to say that extreme experiences like hallucinations and delusions do not exist.

If you are not much for reading, you can watch Jim van Os’s TED Talk and get it all in a 15-minute nutshell or explore the 2-minute ‘explanimations‘ about psychosis and recovery on the website.

Visit the Schizophrenia Doesn’t Exist English-language webpage to find everything in one place. 

The Manifesto outlines “14 Principles for Good Care of Psychosis”. The first 7 principles address current thinking that frames psychosis as a brain disorder called schizophrenia and set out evidence for an alternative – Psychosis Spectrum Syndrome or PSS. The final 7 principles set out a vision for recovery-based practice, these state…

“8: To recover from PSS, a person must be offered hope and perspective from the very first moment. Recovery is a psychological process. It is a process of learning to adapt and develop a new perspective. With support from people with lived experience of psychosis and, where necessary, from doctors and therapists who support the process of recovery.

9: Every person with PSS should have access to a person with lived experience of psychosis from the earliest phase of treatment. A person with lived experience is in a unique position to offer perspective and hope (‘I was able to recover as well’).

10: The primary goal of treatment is return to the person’s environment, education and/or work. Education and work are prerequisites for recovery: even if residual symptoms remain, people can start picking up where they left off. The practice to wait for full recovery is counterproductive.

11: Anyone who enters the mental health system with PSS should be encouraged to talk about their psychosis. The content of the psychosis should be seen as meaningful, and may represent the key to underlying issues.

12: Psycho-education should not introduce an unproven biomedical model of brain disease as a central theme.

13: Anyone who suffers from psychosis should have access to psychotherapy by an experienced therapist.

14: Antipsychotics may be necessary to reduce psychosis but do not correct an underlying biological abnormality. Antipsychotics are no cure. Much more attention is required for individual dose optimisation to reach the lowest possible dose and to avoid irrational polypharmacy.

Schizophrenia does not exist, which is a good thing.
Because much can be done about PSS.”

~ Quoted from, Manifesto: 14 Principles for Good Care of Psychosis. Schizophrenia Does Not Exist website, 12 July 2015.

 

 

Suicide Awareness Evening in West Auckland

Who can we get support from during difficult times?

An evening where you will hear from someone who has lost loved ones to suicide and what they did to ensure both they and other families receive support in the future. Be part of a talk about…

  • How to start the conversation
  • What questions can we ask

Presenter – Mark Wilson (Solace Support Group): Mark is a member of Solace Support Group – a peer support group for those who’ve lost a loved one to suicide. Solace meets monthly and provides support to the suicide bereaved. Mark lost his wife to suicide 9 years ago and often shares his experience of living with loss. Mark believes that greater understanding in the community of the impact of suicide on those left behind helps in healing.

Date:      Monday July 13th 2015
Time:     7pm — 9pm
Venue:   Whanau Ora House, Corner of Catherine and Edsel Streets, Henderson, Auckland
To RSVP contact Johnny Siaosi: johnny.siaosi@waitematadhb.govt.nz
Or phone WALSH Trust: (09) 837 5240

Have You Seen the Target Zero Documentary Yet? Watch Online

A very special documentary aired on Maori Television on the 15th of June. Target Zero highlights the need for suicide prevention strategies in NZ, Key to Life Charitable Trust‘s grassroots work across NZ, what gets people through and the solutions whanau and youth themselves are enacting in their schools and towns. IMG_0168

 

Engage Aotearoa would like to congratulate Mike King, Jo Methven, Tai Tupou and the rest of the Key to Life team on  the messages they have brought together in Target Zero. This is an inspiring example of what can come about when genuine people, with genuine passion, collaborate with their communities to fill community needs.

Watch Target Zero online here and share it on social media.

These are the kinds of ideas we need to be spreading.