mental health awareness week

Mental Health Awareness Week

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week (MHAW) and the theme for this year is “Take Time to Kōrero”, because a little chat goes a long way! Each day this week we'll bring you new resources to help you take care of your mental wellbeing. 


Monday 27 September

mhaw monday The focus for today is “Reconnect with Someone You Care About”. Life gets busy and it is easy to forget to check in with our loved ones. We know that connection with others is important for our wellbeing and helps us feel safe, happy and secure. Today, we encourage you to reconnect with someone whether it is whānau, friends or colleagues.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Give someone a call or send them a text. Ask them how they are going.
  • Write a letter or email to someone and let them know what you appreciate about them.
  • Look back through your photos and share a happy memory you have with someone.

What other ideas do you have for reconnecting with people you care about?


Tuesday 28 September

mhaw tuesdayToday’s focus for Mental Health Awareness Week is “Getting Outside in Nature with Someone”. Kōrero doesn’t just have to happen indoors. Take a moment to chat about things that support your wellbeing and appreciate the beauty around you. The little things like singing birds, the grass beneath our feet and the wind on our faces can bring us so much joy!

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Have your lunch outside with someone in your bubble.
  • Connect with the whenua by going with your bubble for a bush walk, beach walk, or a walk up your local maunga.
  • Go outdoors and snap a photo of something in nature that catches your eye. Send it to someone to brighten their day.

Where are your favourite spots in nature and who do you love sharing them with?


Wednesday 29 September 

mhaw wednesday

Today’s focus for Mental Health Awareness Week is “Having a Kōrero about Te Whare Tapa Whā”. Te Whare Tapa Whā is a health and wellbeing model designed by leading Māori health advocate Sir Mason Durie, which describes how the four walls of a whare represent different aspects of our wellbeing. You can read more about the model here:

Here are some ideas to get you started with exploring Te Whare Tapa Whā:

What do you do to look after the different aspects of your wellbeing?


Thursday 30 September 


mhaw thursdayToday’s focus for Mental Health Awareness Week is “Connect through Kindness”. When we do something for someone else, not only does it make them feel good, it gives our wellbeing a boost in return. We all have something to offer, no matter how big or small. Think about someone who might need some extra support right now, and consider how you could give them your time, kindness, aroha, or kōrero.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Send a kind message to someone in your life and let them know you’re thinking of them.
  • Volunteer your time for others in need, for example joining a community group or dropping off someone’s groceries.
  • Check out these Everyday Kindness activities from Sparklers At Home:

What is your go-to little act of kindness?


Friday 1 October


mhaw friday The final focus for Mental Health Awareness Week this year is “Come together and reflect”. Come together with others at home or work, or find a moment on your own to reflect on this past week. What little chats have you had this week? How does connecting with others and talking openly about wellbeing make you feel?

Here are some ideas for reflecting together:

  • Try switching off the TV for the night and do something together such as playing a game, making music or just talking.
  • Organise a virtual dinner date. Set a time to eat and jump on a video call with someone.
  • Share kōrero and kai with your team at work or together on Zoom.

In the lead-up to MHAW, the Restaurant Association of NZ shared how they’re embracing this year’s theme and taking time to kōrero through “family dinners”. You can read more about it here:

We hope you have enjoyed the tips, resources and inspiration for this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week. Keep taking time to kōrero with the people you care about, and remember a little chat can go a long way.