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Getting Through Together Digest: 2nd September 2020

Wednesday, September 2, 2020   Posted in: Newsletters By: Administrator With tags: newsletter, wellbeing, resilience, campaign, lockdown

Kia ora. Ngā mihi tino aroha ki a Tāmaki Makaurau - thanks for doing your bit to keep Aotearoa safe.

It's no secret that the economic impacts of COVID-19 are affecting some in our society much more than others. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the latest unemployment figures.
In April, May and June, the number of employed people fell by 11,000. What struck us the most was of these, 10,000 were women.

In this issue, we hear from former deputy editor of the NZ Woman's Weekly Kelly Bertrand, on the impact a sudden redundancy during noho rāhui/ lockdown has had on her. If you've lost your job, we hope that like Kelly, you find genuine happiness in your next move.

For those of us who haven't been as impacted by COVID-19, please spare a thought for others who may not be so fortunate - like those students who are leaving school and getting jobs in order to support their families, or those who are staying at home and taking care of siblings so their parents can find new jobs. These sure sound like some amazing young people.

If anything, the last few months have taught us that while we're all in the same waka, we're riding through different storms. This year Mental Health Awareness Week is 21st to 27th September - it's a chance to step back and reflect on what wellbeing means for us in whatever new normal we find ourselves in, and a call to imagine new ways of thriving through and beyond these tough times.

Arohanui,
All Right? and the Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand

Mental Health Awareness Week

This year's Mental Health Awareness Week (MHAW) is all about rediscovering the things that make us feel good.

We've made a bunch of new resources available to you ahead of MHAW on 21st from 27th September.

We have a set of six posters to share, a bunch of digital assets to help you spread the word online, and our very first postcard set - all available in both Te Reo Māori and English. We hope these resources provide timely reminders of the simple, everyday actions we can all take to look after our wellbeing, during COVID-19 and beyond.

From 'woe to go' in a month

When Kelly Bertrand was made redundant during noho rāhui/ lockdown, she brought a longstanding idea to life.

Her new media venture, Capsule was launched one month later and she was working alongside a team of supportive and like-minded women.

Kelly is the former deputy editor of the New Zealand Woman’s Weekly, and was one of the mostly female team of 237 at Bauer Media who lost their jobs, when the business closed several magazines during the alert level four lockdown.

The experience of starting her own company has taught Kelly to trust her instincts.

“I never thought that I would be the type of person to go out on my own and start a business with a group of my mates. It’s not really my personality but it was a needs must situation. And I am so glad it happened.”

Read more of Kelly's lockdown redundancy story.

Community key to carer’s wellbeing

To commemorate World Alzheimer's Month, we'd like to introduce you to Donal and Trish Miller from the Edmund Hillary Retirement Village in Auckland. Trish now lives in the secure care unit (dementia) and Donal lives in their apartment by himself.

The sense of community in the village has been invaluable over the past few years, Donal says.

“To be honest, I don’t know if I would have got this far if it hadn’t been for being in this village,” he says. “There are so many people here who have been through what I’ve been through and you get a great amount of support.”

It is not easy, Donal says frankly. It is a journey. “You know there’s no chance that she’s going to get better."

Lisa Burns from Dementia Auckland, says support from people who have also experienced being a carer of a loved one is invaluable. But she says reducing the fear of dementia is also key. Friends or loved ones can sometimes avoid the person, wanting to remember the person as they were, but this can leave the partner or caregiver of this person feeling very isolated from their friends as well.

“If there’s one message we want to get out, it’s to see the person – not the dementia. That’s the thing with Donal – he still loves and cherishes Trish. He sees the person, not the disease.”

Read more of Donal and Trish's story about dealing with dementia.

How to wear a face mask with Dr Siouxsie Wiles

We've all learned a lot over the last six months. We've learned about levels, we've learned to Zoom, and we're learning about the things we can do at home to look after ourselves.

For those of us 12 and up, we're now learning all about wearing face masks on public transport. This is a big change and something we as Kiwis have never had to do before.

It can be a bit scary and a bit new for some kids. Our friend Avon from Sparklers has interviewed Dr Siouxsie Wiles about the do’s and don’ts of wearing a mask. We think some adults will also find this helpful!

Not all right?

We all need a bit of support from time to time. There are free help and support services available if you or someone you know is struggling right now.

Call or text 1737 to speak with a trained counsellor anytime - it’s free and completely confidential. You can also call Lifeline on 0800 543354 or text HELP to 4357.

Check out the Mental Health Foundation’s website for further advice on how to stay mentally well during this time.

Until next time, stay well Aotearoa.
And remember, we'll get through this - together.


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Healthy Christchurch Champions

  • Canterbury District Health Board
  • Christchurch City Council
  • Environment Canterbury
  • Ministry of Health
  • Ngai Tahu
  • NZ Police
  • Pegasus Health
  • University of Otago, Christchurch