COVID-19: Mental health and wellbeing resources

Information and tools available to support your own and others’ mental wellbeing and where to get help if you need it.

Last updated: 30 August 2021

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Impact of COVID-19

COVID-19 has had a significant impact on how we interact with others, go about our lives, our work, study and many other aspects of our lives. We know that a combination of stress and uncertainty can have significant and wide-reaching impacts on the mental wellbeing of people in New Zealand.

We want people to know it is normal to not feel all right all the time – it’s understandable to feel sad, distressed, worried, confused, anxious or angry during this crisis. Everyone reacts differently to difficult events, and some may find this time more challenging than others. The ways people think, feel and behave are likely to change over time – we all have good days and bad days.

During this time, you may be looking for new or additional ways to help you feel mentally well and get through. Here you can find information on tools to support your own and others’ mental wellbeing and where to get help if you need it.

Supporting your own mental wellbeing 

If you or those around you are concerned about how you’re feeling or your wellbeing, there is information and tools available to help you feel mentally well and get through.

Download information on online mental wellbeing tools and resources:

Information and websites

  • Looking after mental health and wellbeing during COVID-19 advice and information, and useful top tips to get through (Mental Health Foundation)
  • Getting Through Together - Practical tips, stories, and resources focused on things we can all do to maintain our mental wellbeing and look after our whānau during the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Stories of people’s journeys to wellness and ideas to help you find your own way to better wellbeing (
  • Best Bubble highlights choices as people figure out what works best for them, and promotes healthier activities over those that could make life trickier, particularly drinking too much alcohol (NZ Drug Foundation)
  • Asian Family Services provides mental health support to Asians living in New Zealand.
  • Anxiety New Zealand provides a free national helpline as well as workshops, support groups and specialist medical assessment
  • Le Va has tips for maintaining healthy relationships within our “bubbles”
  • WorkSafe have information for office workers and employers on staying mentally well when working from home.

The website provides a range of advice.

Self-help tools and apps

  • Sparklers at Home is an online toolkit for parents, full of fun activities that support the wellbeing of primary and intermediate students
  • Melon is an app with a health journal, resources and self-awareness tools to help you manage your emotional wellbeing. You can also join their online community to connect with and support others, and watch daily webinars about health and wellbeing (Melon Health)
  • Mentemia is an app that you can use to monitor, manage and improve your mental wellbeing by setting daily goals and tracking your progress (Mentemia)
  • Staying on Track is an e-therapy course that teaches you practical strategies to cope with the stress and disruption of day-to-day life (Just a Thought)
  • Small Steps are digital tools to help you maintain wellness, find relief, or get help for yourself, friends or whānau
  • Triple P's three programmes help parents and caregivers to manage their children’s development and anxiety.
    • Triple P Online - for parents/caregivers to support children aged up to 12
    • Teen Triple P Online - for parents/caregivers of pre-teens and teens aged 10 to 16
    • FearLess Triple P Online - for parents of anxious children aged 6 to 14
  • Working through problems with Aunty Dee is a tool to work through problems, generate ideas and find a solution (Le Va)
  • Whakatau Mai - The Wellbeing Sessions are free, virtual community events aimed at supporting wellbeing in real-time – to help you connect you with others, learn and practice new skills, and start looking at things differently

Self-help tools for young people

Support for frontline health care professionals and care workers

Frontline staff who are seeking mental health and wellbeing support can access their organisation’s employee assistance programme, or call or text 1737.

Concerned about your substance use and/or gambling?

During this time people may be looking to familiar habits or seeking out new ways to cope with feelings and situations. While alcohol or other drug (substance) use and / or gambling may seem like ways to cope, these behaviours can negatively impact many areas of our lives including our health, wairua (spirit), hinengaro (mind), relationships and overall wellbeing.

If you, or those around you, are concerned about your substance use and/or gambling, there are some great resources to help you identify if you need some extra support:

What if I am already receiving mental health and addiction services or need these services?

Mental health and addiction services continue to be available. Some services may still be delivered in different ways such as by video link or over the phone.

If you, or those around you, are already receiving mental health and addiction services, continue to do the things that you know are helpful for your mental health and wellbeing and make contact with the health professional you see most often if you need advice or additional support right now.  The online and phone support services listed on this page are also available for you to use.

Talk to your health professional, GP, or free call or text 1737 any time to talk to a trained counsellor if you need further support.

Supporting others' mental wellbeing

There is a lot you can do to help yourself, your friends, family and community during this time.

Supporting children and young people

There may be children or young people in your life who experience distress. As a trusted adult, you can help reassure and educate them about COVID-19:

Supporting people living with mental health or addiction challenges

  • Whai Ora, Whiti Ora Fund – helps charitable organisations and community groups help tāngata whaiora – those who live with mental health and addictions challenges (Mental Health Foundation).

Supporting someone with substance use and/or gambling concerns

You can follow these links for resources to support you while you support someone else:

Supporting someone who is feeling suicidal

You can follow these links for resources to support you while you support someone else:

If you need someone to talk to

If you need to talk, free call or text 1737 to talk to a trained counsellor. They’re available day and night.

Other places that can help you if you need someone to talk to: 

If you’re feeling suicidal

If you’re feeling suicidal or having thoughts of suicide tell someone you trust so you can get the support you need. If you can’t find someone you trust to talk to, free call or text 1737 to talk to a trained counsellor. They’re available day and night. Other helpful resources that are available include:

If you’re concerned about someone’s safety

If you’re seriously concerned about someone’s immediate safety, or if someone is putting others in immediate danger, call 111 for assistance or contact your district health board’s psychiatric emergency service or mental health crisis assessment team. Try to help them to stay safe until support arrives.

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