17 Jun 2016

Rural mental health services get $600k boost

8:08 pm on 17 June 2016

The government is spending another $600,000 to help rural mental health initiatives.

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Photo: 123rf.com

Last year it put $500,000 into supporting mental well-being in rural communities, with workshops on mental health issues and a boost in the number of volunteers working with rural support trusts.

Announcing the new funding at the National Agricultural Fieldays near Hamilton this morning, Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy said it would help boost existing services.

"What this will enable us to do is train 80 co-ordinators who are going to work with the 14 rural support trusts, 15 regional clinical champions. and we're also going to upskill the 0800 responders, so when farmers choose to ring an 0800 number, they can know that on the end of it will be somebody who udnerstands the farming culture."

Mr Guy said extra funding was decided on because of the stress caused by ongoing drought and low milk prices.

Where to get help:

Rural Support Trusts can be contacted on 0800 787 254 (0800 RURAL HELP).

Help can also be found by contacting:

Lifeline - 0800 543 354

Depression Helpline (8 am to 12 midnight) - 0800 111 757

Healthline - 0800 611 116

Samaritans - 0800 726 666 (for callers from the Lower North Island, Christchurch and West Coast) or 0800 211 211 / (04) 473 9739 (for callers from all other regions)

Suicide Crisis Helpline (aimed at those in distress, or those who are concerned about the wellbeing of someone else) - 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO)

Youthline - 0800 376 633, free text 234 or email talk@youthline.co.nz