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In 2020, the Queenstown Lakes Community Housing Trust survey report identified various wellbeing-related concerns in the period of time following the Covid-19 lockdowns.
GoodYarn, Te Hau Toka Southern Lakes Wellbeing and Southern Wellbeing Trust have taken a proactive approach to provide support surrounding those worries.
Southern Wellbeing Trust general manager Anna Dorsey said mental health education was not just a short-term response, but a solution for long-term support.
Coming from a public health background, she acknowledged there could be barriers in seeking clinical support for people struggling.
"We’ve seen that people will often first talk with close friends or family before seeking clinical support. Because of this, our model is peer-to-peer focused. It’s about empowering our community [members] to support one another," she said.
In order to provide long-term safe spaces, the community needed to be resourced to facilitate supportive conversations, she said.
Te Hau Toka Southern Lakes Wellbeing group chairwoman Adell Cox said mental health had become a focus for workplace safety.
"Prioritising wellbeing has never been more important, given the challenges our community and businesspeople have been facing."
Ms Cox identified tourism, accommodation, hospitality and retail businesses in particular, as those who have been "doing it tough".
The top needs identified in the survey were safety-related and encompassed health, financial situations and employment.
Six free workshops throughout May and June in Queenstown and Wanaka focused on mental health education.
Location and dates were available on the Southern Wellbeing Trust’s website.