Engage Aotearoa

Category Archives: Youth Issues

IIMHL New Zealand Special Update

The following links are a summary of the IIMHL AND IIDL UPDATE – 15 NOVEMBER 2014

If you want further information on the IIMHL organisation go here. To sign up for their mailing list go here.

For general enquiries about these links or for other IIMHL information please contact Erin Geaney at erin@iimhl.com.

  1. The Physical Health of People with a Serious Mental Illness and/or Addiction: An evidence review
  2. Stories of Success
  3. Tihei Mauri Ora: Supporting whānau through suicidal distress
  4. New ‘wellbeing bank’ for baby boomers
  5. “There is always someone worse off…” (regarding the earthquakes in Christchurch)
  6. Debriefing following seclusion and restraint: A summary of relevant literature
  7. Families and whānau status report 2014: Towards measuring the wellbeing of families and whānau
  8. Growing Up in New Zealand: Vulnerability Report 1: Exploring the Definition of Vulnerability for Children in their First 1000 Days (July 2014)
  9. Parents or caregivers of children with a disability have a voice in New Zealand (video playlist)

Also recommended in the update are:

Effective parenting programmes: A review of the effectiveness of parenting programmes for parents of vulnerable children
(2014, April 14). Wellington: Families Commission

New Zealand practice guidelines for opioid substitution treatment
(2014, April). Wellington: Ministry of Health

 

 

Keep on Keeping On: Carnival for a Cause | Auckland 7 Dec 2014

Third Annual Suicide Prevention Awareness Carnival

  • Date: 7 December
  • Time: 13:00–16:00
  • Place: Corban Estate Arts Centre, 2 Mt Lebanon Lane, Henderson, Auckland

Keep on Keeping On is the annual festival where we all come together to have fun in the sun at the same time as we learn about suicide prevention, who we can all turn to in our time of need or how to talk about a loved one at risk. 

This year’s event features carnival rides and games, FREE Santa photos, a market filled with local groups and organizations who work hard to make our community a great place to be, and also lots of local organizations that are here to help us if we are feeling a bit confused or down or just need a good old chin wag.

This year the event is welcoming back YOUTHLINE, and the WALSH TRUST and joined by groups like MAN ALIVE, ADHB SEXUAL HEALTH, CASPER and many many more, in the hope of letting people know exactly who they can turn to if they are in need. 

Find more info on the Facebook Event page

Teacher Uses Coping Kete to Theme Static Image Lessons

Engage Aotearoa went to the Far North LifeHack Weekend in mid-2014 and met Ilana Hill, a Year 9 teacher at Taipa Area School with a passion for suicide prevention. She had the idea to use the content in The Coping Kete to get her students talking about coping and at the same time engage them meaningfully in the Static Image component of the Year 9 English curriculum.

Ilana says “I have a year 9 class that is full of energy and disparate personalities. I was very worried about engagement in English and I was seeking ways to make learning relevant and meaningful.” She adds, “I was really excited about helping make useful information about how to cope with depression visually accessible. I got the idea that perhaps … it could even be a subtle vehicle to teach them some of their own coping techniques for when times get tough.”

I hoped students would develop compassion and tools to become resilient as they progress through their teenage years in a very low decile area where they have to face a lot of negativity in their lives.”

Students were motivated by the knowledge that the top two posters would actually be shared on the Engage Aotearoa website to help more people find what they need. In this way, the project gave students an opportunity to make a real difference to their communities. Mindful of the sensitivity of mental-health related topics in school, Ilana worked with Engage Aotearoa and her school principal to set safe guidelines for the project and incorporated these into her existing lesson plans for the Year 9 static image curriculum.

Engage Aotearoa and the CMHRT board of trustees would like to thank Ilana for leading this partnership and giving permission for her material to be turned into a resource for others (this will be available on the Engage Aotearoa website shortly). The team also sends out a massive thanks to the students at Taipa Area School for their amazing work in creating graphic designs that share ideas that matter. You all did a fantastic job and in the words of the service director “we wish we had space for all of them!”

Check out the top two designs below and help us share these young Kiwis’ work as far and wide as it can go.

First Place

Aaliyah for It’s Ok to Have a Bad Day

Judges notes: “This poster design stood out for its simplicity and the importance of the message that Aaliyah chose to highlight from The Coping Kete. One of the most important things for surviving the tough times, is being allowed to have tough times. So much of our suffering comes from not being allowed to feel what we feel. Strategy 29 in The Coping Kete is all about telling ourselves that it is okay/acceptable to feel the whole spectrum of emotions, instead of trying to stay in the ‘positive’ ones all the time and judging ourselves for the ‘negative’ ones like anger, anxiety, sadness, jealousy or disgust.”
Taipa-Area-School-Static-imageComp-1stPlace-EngageAotearoa

 Second Place

Destiny for It Helps to Talk

Judges Notes: “Destiny chose to highlight a message that is central to most effective suicide prevention and mental-health promotion strategies. We liked the idea that a young person chose to share this particular message with other young people. In the words of a young person we met at KiwiFoo Camp in May, “kids are sick of adults telling them what to do”. Here we have a 14 year-old sharing the message that talking helps. We liked how the cup shape suggests sitting down to a cup of tea with someone and the words Destiny chose to fill the cup with might give people a few ideas of who to reach out to. It also says something about the range of people we need to get involved in creating truly supportive communities.”

Taipa-Area-School-Static-ImageComp-2ndPlace-EngageAotearoa

 

5 things I learned about coping with depression in my teens

RecoveryNotes_WebImage

Five things I learned about coping with depression as a teenager

Recovery Note #4

~ Emma Edwards


1. It’s okay to not be okay

It is not a weakness to experience depression, anxiety, and other forms of distress as a teenager. It is quite common! Society tells us that we should look and behave in certain ways, and that we have to fit a certain stereotype in order to simply be accepted. I didn’t think it was okay to be struggling with depression when I was a teenager. I thought it meant I was weak and worthless. But admitting that I was not okay and that I did not know who I was took me on a journey of incredible discovery. I came out the other end of the dark tunnel with strength, purpose, and value for my life. I wouldn’t change a thing.

2. Connection is the key

It is incredibly lonely when experiencing depression – and I almost think it is more lonely when you experience depression as a teenager, during the life-stage in which you are trying to figure out how and where you fit in the world. At a time in your life when you are trying to fit in, you fall into a dark hole that isolates you – giving you no opportunity to find your place in the world. I isolated myself and was anxious to interact with anyone. However, the most useful thing for me was the one thing I did not want to do – it was to spend time with friends, family, and people who understood what I was going through.

 

“When you are at the bottom of the dark hole, it feels like every movement causes you to fall deeper. It is extremely difficult to see that each step actually takes you closer to the light of day.”

 

3. Asking for help actually helps!

Looking back, I had friends around me going through similar struggles, and I wanted them to be honest, ask for help, and let me support them. I saw them as courageous when they confronted their fears, darkness, and failures head-on. I learned that it takes more courage to be vulnerable, ask for help, and accept others’ support than it does to wrestle alone in the dark. I learned that friends, family, and professionals actually wanted to help me. Each time that I reached outside of myself and asked for help, my burden was lightened a little bit because it was shared with another. Even if the problem was not solved by the other person, at least I felt more understood, more loved, and less alone.

4. Balance between trust and supervision

I am sure my adolescent self would not admit this, but I’ve learned from looking back at my experience that it was helpful to have a balance of trust and supervision from my parents. I think this balance is largely determined by what is safe for us. As I built up trust with my parents, the amount of supervision I needed decreased. I found that, as my parents trusted me more, I learned to trust myself more – giving me confidence in myself. From my view, the helpful parent provides love, encouragement, support, practical help, and compassionate supervision.Blaming, minimising, or not being taken seriously are not helpful. Being listened to, provided with appropriate help, and shown compassion are essential.

5. It is never the end

There is always hope. I know clichés like “there’s a light at the end of the tunnel” often don’t provide much reassurance at the time, but it turns out they are actually true. When you are at the bottom of the dark hole, it feels like every movement causes you to fall deeper. It is extremely difficult to see that each step actually takes you closer to the light of day. But others can see it. Others can see the bigger picture because they are not in the dark hole with you. In these times, when all hope seems to have escaped you – I learned that I could rely on at least one person around me to hold the hope for me. When I could not see it, they could. When I could not believe, they believed. They held my hope, and gave it back to me when I could hold it again. It is never the end. There is always hope.

 

Emma Edwards
Treasurer, Community Mental-Health Resources Trust

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About the author: Emma Edwards is currently completing her doctorate degree. She was previously a registered mental-health professional, working in youth and adult mental-health settings. Her own service-user and family experience with mental-health struggles sparked her passion to support others and make a difference to those struggling to cope with difficult times.

Read more Recovery Notes here

Recovery Notes is an Engage Aotearoa project that asks people to share the top five tips and insights they have learned from or about their personal experiences of mental-health recovery or being a supporter.

Write your own Recovery Note

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Copyright (c) Engage Aotearoa, 2014

 

Generation Next – Mental Health and Wellbeing Seminar

Generation Next is a not-for-profit social enterprise dedicated to enhancing the mental health and wellbeing of young people and their communities.

They run a series of annual seminars in Australia and NZ. They aim to provide participants with the knowledge and skills to help young people achieve and maintain their emotional, social, mental, and physical wellbeing.

The Mental Health & Wellbeing of Young People, being held in Auckland on Friday 1 August 2014 will feature local and international experts in child mental health and wellbeing, showcasing the latest updates on key health, social, and educational issues.

Download 2014 Brochure here.

The Cube NZ: Strategic Action Plan and Awards

The Cube NZ are working with the Auckland Councils Youth Advisory Panel, to launch the I Am Auckland Children and Young Peoples Strategic Action Plan and the very first Youth Work and Youth Organisation Awards.

The Launch and Awards will be on 25th July 2014 at the Limelight Theatre, Aotea Centre. This event I completely Youth Led, meaning that young people are designing and delivering all aspects of the launch and awards.

What we are needing from you…….

Please get the message out that we are giving young people the opportunity to recognise and nominate youth workers and youth organisations for an awards. They can do this by filling out this very easy nomination form www.iamauckland.co.nz.

All the information on who you can nominate and the categories are on the form. What else are we looking for…… as this is youth led, we are looking for young people who are interested in some work experience in setting up and delivering the event, if you know of a young person (aged between 15 – 24) who would like to get some event work experience please email iamauckland.awards@gmail.com and we will hook them up with the Cube Crew who are organising the event.

If you have any questions about the event feel free to contact Catherine on Catherine@yesdisability.org.nz

Wellington, Skylight: “Talking About…” Workshops for Supporters of Children and Young People

The “Talking About…” series of workshops provides professional development for those working in environments where they are supporting children and young people through challenging life events and crises.

Skylight, who runs the workshops, is a national grief support agency that has been running successful training for almost a decade. Skylight’s training facilitators bring a range of professional backgrounds, and provide practical strategies, ideas, suggestions and resources for practitioners.

The next workshop is on Wednesday the 18th of June: Talking About Stress and Anxiety with Madeleine Taylor.

There are also workshops in August, September, and October.

Flyer here.

Workshops are from 9:30am to 12:30pm at Skylight, 2A Green St, Newtown, Wellington. Please allow ample time to find parking.

$80 per workshop. Includes morning tea and handouts.
15% discount available for participants who register for 3 or more workshops at one time.
Registration confirmed on receipt of payment.

To register email pd@skylight-trust.org.nz, or call 0800 299 100 for further information.

Invisible Voices: The experience of young carers living with a parent who experiences mental illness.

ARE YOU 16, 17 OR 18 YEARS OLD?

Have you had experience of caring for a parent with mental illness?
Have you had experience of caring for a sibling or siblings due to a parent’s experience of mental illness?
Would you be able to volunteer around one and a half hours of your time to take part in an individual interview, to talk about your experiences?
Interviews can take place locally in an environment suitable to you. Your confidentiality and that of your family will be respected at every stage of this study.

“My name is Karen Merrett. I am a Masters of Social Work student at Auckland University, currently undertaking my thesis. I’d like to hear the stories of young carers of parents who experience mental illness, with the aim of improving services to young carers and their families. Please contact me directly on 027 471 7394. If you leave your details, I’ll contact you to talk about the study.”

APPROVED BY THE UNIVERSITY OF AUCKLAND HUMAN PARTICIPANTS ETHICS COMMITTEE ON 19/11/2013 for (3) years Ref No. 010682

Youth Week: 17-25 May 2014

Youth Week is about recognising the amazing contributions and achievements of young people in New Zealand.  The week inspires us to value, support, and affirm the diversity of young people in our society. Ultimately we want Aotearoa/ New Zealand to be a country where young people are vibrant and optimistic through being supported and encouraged to take up challenges. The theme for youth week 2014 is ‘Be the Change’.

Youth Week is organised by Ara Taiohi, which is the peak body for the youth sector, created by New Zealand Aotearoa Adolescent Health and Development (NZAAHD) and the National Youth Workers Network Aotearoa (NYWNA).

http://arataiohi.org.nz/YouthWeek

Feed the Kids Bill Aims for Government-Funded Food-in-Schools Programme

The following is a press release from Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and MP for Te Tai Tokerau

Wednesday 12 March 2014

“Kids have a knack of saying things plain and simple” said Hone Harawira, MANA Leader and Tai Tokerau MP, following the lunch he hosted at Parliament today for 50 students from Naenae College who help run the school’s KickStart breakfast club.

“When asked why they support MANA’s Feed the Kids Bill they said they hate seeing kids having to scab food off other kids, and they’re embarrassed to have to hide their own lunches from their class mates.”

“And then they asked “Why can’t John Key make a smart decision and just Feed the Kids?”

“I was glad I was able to personally acknowledge the Naenae College seniors for fronting their breakfast club” said Harawira, “but the school’s guidance counsellor tells me it’s a real struggle organising volunteers, raising funds, and getting businesses to sponsor the extra kai.”

In question time today, which the College students observed, Mr Harawira pointed out that the government-assisted KickStart and KidsCan programmes feed about 20,000 students a day “which means that 80,000 are still going hungry … every day.”

“Even the kids are telling us that more needs to be done” said Harawira, “but government just point-blank refuses to step in.”

“In fact, Bill English thinks that hungry kids can learn just fine!”

“Honestly, it’s bloody frustrating when those who lead the country can be so dumb.”

MANA’s Feed the Kids Bill, which aims to introduce government-funded breakfast and lunch programmes for all students in decile 1-2 schools, is expected to be up for first reading in the coming months.

For further information from MANA, please contact Jevan Goulter, (022) 088-5646.