5 Aug 2015

Funding boost for rural support network

3:57 pm on 5 August 2015

A hundred new people will be trained to join rural support trusts around the country as part of a government initiative aimed at mental health in rural communities.

Health Minister Jonathan Coleman and Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy announced the plan today, saying it was the first part of a $500,000 funding boost.

Mr Guy said the trained part-time workers and volunteers would help to link farming families with mental health, financial and advice services already in place.

He said rural professionals - including vets and farm advisors - would also be trained to recognise and refer people who need help.

The Government, working with DairyNZ and Beef and Lamb New Zealand, has already put in place an expanded support network in Waikato, which will be nationwide by the end of September.