Mental Health & Addiction Update - 11 December 2020

on 15 December





Toni Gutschlag Acting Deputy Director-General, Mental Health and Addiction

Toni Gutschlag
Acting Deputy Director-General, Mental Health and Addiction

Kia ora whānau

As we approach the middle of December, I know many of you will be looking forward to taking a well-earned break over the Christmas and New Year period. I’m very much looking forward to catching up with family and friends over the summer and recharging my batteries.

One morning next week my team and are are taking some time to pause, share some kai and one another’s company, and show our appreciation for each other after what has been a busy and, at times, unrelenting year.

Taking the time to reflect on what we have achieved this year is an important step in acknowledging all that we aim to achieve next year. I’m incredibly proud of the progress that has been made in strengthening the mental health and addiction system in Aotearoa New Zealand so far and I am grateful for all the hard work that has gone into supporting mental health and wellbeing efforts across the country.

Although we are still in a relatively early part of a much longer journey, we are making real progress with expanding options for people to access help when and where they need it. There is still much to do and it will take all of us working together to create a mental health and addiction system that supports all New Zealanders.

This system is much greater than what can be provided through mental health and addiction or related services, it is about how we live our lives – how we interact and support each other, and how we look after ourselves.

The holiday season is a joyful time of year for many of us however we know that not everyone finds this time easy.

The Getting Through Together team have developed a summer campaign that reminds us that it can be the simple things that bring us joy. To that end, there are some wellbeing tips below to help build your resilience to get through the next few weeks. I hope you enjoy Belle’s story about how she and her whānau have chosen to focus on building memories.

Ngā mihi nui



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