Engage Aotearoa

Category Archives: Support

Events, information and news about support options or accessing support. This could be family support or support from a community group or club.

Just a Few Weeks Left to Enrol in Engage Group!


Engage Group’s start date has been moved to the 5th of June to allow the last few spaces to be filled before getting underway. Click here for more information.

FREE Engage Group Anxiety Programme Starts in Auckland 1 May 2013


Click here to find out more about Engage Group and save a copy of the information sheet.


Info Refresher: The Disability Allowance

The Disability Allowance is a weekly payment to help people meet the costs associated with a disability or health condition (including mental-health conditions). You can find out more by following the link below. You might be surprised to find out just how many things you can get help with if you live with the effects of a health condition.


About the Disability Allowance

The Disability Allowance is a weekly payment for people of all ages who have a disability or ongoing health condition and need help with the additional costs directly associated with that condition.

It is available to people who qualify for a Community Services Card including those on a benefit or people who are working. There is an income test. An application can also be made on behalf of a child if they are aged 18 years or under and financially dependent on the person who is making the application.

To qualify for Disability Allowance the person must:

have a disability or health condition that is likely to last at least six months have regular, ongoing costs because of a disability which are not fully covered by another agency are a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident normally live in New Zealand and intend to stay here meet the income and asset test.

Allowable costs covered by a Disability Allowance

Following are some examples of costs that a Disability Allowance may be paid for; noting that the cost must be directly related to the person’s disability:

Alternative treatment: must be supported by a medical practitioner as being necessary to be publically funded for the person’s condition, and the treatment provided or supervised by a health practitioner (under the HPCAA).

Ambulance fees and subscriptions: when a person is required to pay ambulance fees or subscription fees on an annual on-going basis.

Authorised consumables: can cover the ongoing additional cost of consumable items needed by a person, eg hearing aids, vet’s fees etc for guide dogs, incontinence pads (if they are not provided through Health).

Clothing: for additional clothing costs that a person has which may arise because of greater frequency of washing, wear and tear resulting from use of a prosthetic aid or wheelchair or the need to have clothes or shoes made-to-measure.

Counselling: for counselling fees if the need for counselling is directly related to the person’s disability. It is limited to 10 sessions with the opportunity for some additional sessions if clinically indicated (uncommon).

Day care for the elderly disabled: to help meet the costs of an elderly disabled person (usually aged 65 or over) to attend a day care centre, and/or the cost of transport to the centre.

Gardening, lawns and outside window cleaning: covers the costs of gardening, lawn-mowing, and outside window cleaning for the person’s own home or private residence where the person or another resident in the home is unable to do these tasks themselves.

Gym and swimming pool fees: may be paid when the exercise activities are directly related to a person’s disability and will have a therapeutic value.

Medical alarms: to cover the costs of medical alarm rental and monitoring if a medical alarm is necessary for normal daily living and without it, the person’s life or health would be put at risk, or their disability would be aggravated.

Medical fees: to cover the cost of appointments with general practitioners, specialists or hospital fees if the costs are additional and ongoing. This can also include fees for the some other health services (if a registered medical practitioner verifies the need and its relationship to the documented disability or health condition), for example occupational therapy, physiotherapy, audiology, podiatry or dental services.

Pharmaceutical charges: to cover the costs of regular and ongoing pharmaceutical charges. Note: It is generally only paid to assist with the cost of pharmaceutical products that are subsidised or partially subsidised under the New Zealand Public Health and Disability Act.

Power, gas and heating: for the additional electricity, gas or heating costs that a person has. It is for the costs over and above the normal power consumption of similar-sized households.

Rental equipment: for necessary rental equipment when the client has a need for the item or service but can’t receive funding through the District Health Board or another state funded agency and their life or health would be put at risk, or their disability aggravated if they could not hire the equipment.

Special foods: to cover the additional costs of special foods, ie for costs over and above the normal cost of food. Vitamins, supplements, herbal remedies and minerals can also be included when they are recommended as necessary for the management of the condition.

Telephone: for telephone costs to a person with a disability only when the ongoing cost of the telephone is directly related to the person’s disability.

Transport – disability: for additional travel costs that a person has because of their disability. These additional travel costs can be incurred when a person with a disability is carrying out everyday activities. Examples of everyday activities may include (but is not limited to) shopping, vocational services and work.

Transport – personal health: to cover the costs of regular travel to a health practitioner for supervision or treatment of the person’s disability.

Two Free Engage Groups to Run in 2013

Community Mental-Health Resources Trust (CMHRT) is pleased to announce that funds have been obtained to deliver two of Engage Aotearoa Ltd’s successful Engage Group programmes for FREE at Youthline next year.

Dates for each group are still to be confirmed, but as we come to the end of one year and the start of the next, it’s the perfect time to start thinking about signing up. If you feel like anxiety has been holding you back this year, Engage Group might be just the ticket for a more empowered 2013. With two groups running, that’s 20 free opportunities to overcome anxiety in the New Year.

Visit the Engage Group Programme Information page in CMHRT’s Community Treasure Chest on the Engage Aotearoa website to find out more. Almost anyone over the age of 18 is eligible to take part.

Contact Youthline on (09) 361 4168 or email Services@youthline.co.nz to enroll on the waiting list.

And don’t forget to pass it on and spread the word – sharing is caring.

Dispute Resolution Services Online and Nationwide

Dispute Resolution Services Limited (DRSL) is a specialist dispute resolution Crown Entity company. It provides services and systems to solve disputes between organisations and the people they come into contact with.

DRSL operates throughout New Zealand, and across a range of industry sectors. It is the primary dispute resolution service for settling disputes between consumers and the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC), and it operates independent dispute resolution schemes for phone and internet providers and for mortgage, finance and insurance companies or advisers and many other types of financial service providers.

DRSL also provides dispute resolution services to other industry sectors, including in employment, health and disability, real estate and environmental areas.

The Telecommunication Dispute Resolution service (TDR) was established as an independent dispute scheme for consumers. The majority of phone and internet providers are members of the scheme, so that TDR covers approximately 98% of the residential and small-to-medium market. The scheme was established in 2007, and has received thousands of calls since it was launched.  (Contact Freephone 0508 98 98 98). A typical complaint is about unexpected phone charges.

DRSL also operates the Financial Dispute Resolution (FDR) scheme. FDR was established as part of the regulations introduced to the financial industry by the Government in 2010, which were designed to encourage consumer confidence in the industry and improve the practices of financial service providers and advisers.

DRSL set up and operates FDR, which is the Government’s scheme for consumers who have a dispute with mortgage, finance and insurance companies or advisers that are FDR Scheme Members.  (Contact Freephone 0508 337 337).  A typical complaint is about unexpected finance charges or actions by a finance company Recent research suggests minority groups are under-represented as complainants.  People who speak languages other than English, or are not confident readers, are less likely to use specialised complaint handling services.

To help overcome this issue DRSL and other specialised complaint handling organisations have developed resources for teaching the language of complaint to these groups. The resources are available free online.  Anyone can download the information from www.complaintline.org.nz or www.fdr.org.nz or www.tdr.org.nz

You can also contact DRSL on:

Auckland: 09 915 8200

Wellington: 04 918 4900

Christchurch: 03 962 9000

Crossroads Clubhouse on Facebook

Crossroads Clubhouse now has a Facebook page!

You can view this by clicking on the following link www.facebook.com/CrossroadsClubhouseNZ  feel free to “like” the page to keep in touch with their updates.


Ph: (+64 9) 376 4267

Fax: (+64 9) 376 1833

Crossroads Clubhouse is a member of the International Network of Clubhouses successfully operating in 24 countries around the world under guidance from the International Centre for Clubhouse Development (ICCD) www.iccd.org

Funding Bug Strikes Again: Eden Counselling Service Closes

Due to lack of funding, Eden will close it’s counselling services at the end of business on the 23rd of October 2012. Counsellors will continue to operate privately.

Victoria Marsden

BA, PG Dipl Tchng, MCouns (Hons), MNZAC

Ph: 021-122-4221

Email: v.marsden@xtra.co.nz

Web: Victoria at Auckland Psychology

Perry King

Ph: 021-778-392

For parents, caregivers, supporters and friends: EDANZ

Ph: (09) 522-2679

Email: info@ed.org.nz


New Help Line for Chinese People

Vagus Line 0800 56 76 666

As from 1 October 2012, Vagus line 0800 56 76 666 from Chinese Mental Health Consultation Services Trust will be in service:

This new service is to promote family harmony among Chinese, enhance parenting skills, decrease conflict among family members (couple, parent-child, in-laws) and stop family violence.

Vagus Line provides FREE/ CONFIDENTAIL/ PROFESSIONAL consultation such as providing parenting strategies, communication skills.

If necessary, clients can be referred to Vagus counselling services or related resources.

Service hours: Monday, Wednesday, Friday from 12 noon to 2pm

Engage Group Full for 2012

Engage Group is a free education and support programme for people of any age who struggle with the limiting effects of anxiety in any form.

The next programme gets underway at Youthline in Ponsonby, Auckland on Wednesday October 3rd with a full group who will spend the next ten weeks together exploring ways to overcome anxiety and supporting each other through.

Enrolments are now closed for 2012. But to make sure you don’t miss out on the opportunity to enrol next year, contact Youthline’s special services centre on (09) 361 4168 or services@youthline.co.nz to add yourself to the waitlist.

More information can be found on the Engage Aotearoa website at the following link:


Engage Group Now FREE!!! Starts 3 October 2012

Youthline and Community Mental-Health Resources Trust are pleased to announce enrolments for Engage Group are now open for 2012 and participation is entirely free.

Spaces are limited to 8 participants – first in, first served.

Find the full information pack and eligibility criteria online here or phone Youthline for further information.