Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Taranaki suicide intervention stretched critically thin


Taranaki Retreat opened its doors in March 2017 as a suicide prevention initiative. However, demand has quickly outstripped supply and the pioneering charity needs your help to walk with Kiwis through their darkest days.

The retreat was established by a charitable trust, emerging from the vision of husband-and-wife team, Jamie and Suzy Allen, to provide a safe haven for people experiencing trauma, grief and crisis in their lives. That might be dealing with depression or suicidal thoughts or simply feeling trapped (606 Kiwis took their own lives last year).

Taranaki Retreat provides free accommodation and ongoing support in a whanau-based rural community, creating space for guests to rest and intentionally work through life’s big questions.

Jamie explains that demand has been far more than they anticipated: “It reflects how deep and widespread the problems are. It’s often hidden, but so many people are just hanging in there by the fingernails.”

Jamie and his team have launched a PledgeMe campaign with the goal of hiring a new Community Support Worker (requiring over $42,000). He says that a shoulder to lean on is what their guests need most.

A lifetime of issues and stress take time to work through, and the role of the Support Worker is to walk alongside the retreat’s guests in a compassionate, loving and non-judgemental way, directing the guests towards other support services as needed.

“It is deeply healing to be listened to; to be truly heard,” says Jamie. “Each day we feel privileged to hear people’s stories—to be on a shared journey with our guests, sometimes through the most profound suffering.”

Taranaki Retreat works in partnership with health professionals and other support agencies, but they also seek to provide the small, but meaningful, touches that can make all the difference to a guest’s state of mind.

“You can get a haircut and style and a pedicure and foot massage as part of your stay, experience equine therapy or work with our personal trainer in the gym,” explains Jamie. “All delivered by our volunteers who are extraordinarily generous with their time.”

The retreat fields over 120 enquiries each month—more than they can currently handle. Jamie says that the harsh realities of what people are facing can be heartbreaking:

“Recently, a truly wonderful person whom we were looking forward to hosting, tragically ended their life before they were able to stay with us. We continue to weave their story and magnificence into the urgency of what we are here for—because this truly is about all of us.”

Every dollar given and every hour of volunteer time served provides another opportunity for those who are struggling to find that shoulder to lean on that they desperately need.

“It’s super critical that we keep pace with the volume of enquiries,” says Jamie.

“We need an extra pair of helping hands. This new Support Worker will massively improve the agility in which we can respond to the needs of our community.”

Taranaki Retreat’s PledgeMe campaign begins on 11 March 2018. To give, see http://pldg.me/taranakiretreat

Rewards for their PledgeMe campaign include:

• receiving artwork created by Taranaki Retreat guests,
• naming retreat buildings,
• and home-made brownie delivered personally anywhere in the world.

If the crowd-funding appeal reaches its target there is a further goal to fund the development of additional buildings for on-site counselling services. “We are aiming high, because that’s the very least people deserve,” says Jamie.

PledgeMe themselves are excited about presenting the funding campaign:

“Community organisations like Taranaki Retreat really show the importance of engaging with your crowd to fill a community need. They smashed their target to open the retreat back in 2016, and we can’t wait to see what they achieve this time around,” says Jess Ducey, Chief People Wrangler of PledgeMe.

For more information, visit taranakiretreat.org.nz


© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

 

Dealing Crackdown, Addiction Support: Government Action On Synthetics

The NZ Drug Foundation has welcomed the Government’s response to synthetic drug deaths. The response strikes a balance between giving law enforcement the tools they need to target criminal networks and changing drug law to make it easier for people to access help when they need it. More>>

ALSO:

Strategy Committee Unanimous: Wellington To Forge Ahead With Convention Centre

The three-storey Cable Street building, with around 18,000-square metres of floor space, will comfortably be able to host 1500 people for conventions. It includes a 1651sq m exhibition area that will attract international exhibitions too big for nearby Te Papa and provide an always-changing visitor attraction. More>>

ALSO:

Surveying The Surveillance: First IGIS Review Of Warrants Under New Act

The report sets out the Inspector-General’s interpretation of the new warrant provisions under the ISA and her expectations of the GCSB and NZSIS when they prepare warrant applications. More>>

SSC: 2018 Public Service Workforce Data Published

State Services Commissioner Peter Hughes has published the 2018 Our People, Public Service Workforce Data , which shows the Public Service is making significant progress in important areas. More>>

ALSO:

Sinking Cap: Auctions, Permanent Forests, Added To ETS

The move to auctions, signalled in an August consultation paper, will help put a cap on the number of emission units available over time. Annual announcements, looking forward five years, will help provide certainty for scheme participants, she said. More>>

ALSO:

Joint Select Committee Report: Achieving Smokefree 2025

In a historic first for select committees, the Māori Affairs Committee and the Health Committee presented their joint report on achieving the Smokefree 2025 goal to the House on Tuesday, 11 December 2018. More>>

"Shared Interests And Democratic Values": Peters To Visit USA

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters will travel to Washington D.C. for talks with US Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo and other senior members of the US Administration. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels