An­swer­ing the call

Central Leader - - News - By Scott Mor­gan

A new sup­port line is up and run­ning for peo­ple with men­tal health is­sues.

Warm­line, funded by the Auck­land District Health Board and run by Life­line, pro­vides a ser­vice that al­lows peo­ple strug­gling with men­tal health is­sues to talk to some­one who has had sim­i­lar prob­lems.

Team leader Ester Re­don, who has over­come post-natal de­pres­sion, says pro­vid­ing peer sup­port is much dif­fer­ent to talk­ing with a coun­sel­lor.

“When you can talk to some­one you can re­late to who’s been on a sim­i­lar jour­ney and re­cov­ery process, it can build a stronger re­la­tion­ship.”

The One Tree Hill res­i­dent says peo­ple of­ten just need to get some­thing off their chest, rather than re­quir­ing pro­fes­sional help.

She says callers can of­ten work their own prob­lems out af­ter talk­ing to some­one who cares.

ADHB plan­ning and fund­ing man­ager for men­tal health and ad­dic­tions Deirdre Maxwell says it de­cided to fund the ser­vice af­ter its cri­sis line re­ceived calls from peo­ple who weren’t in dire sit­u­a­tions.

She says Warm­line pro­vides a more suit­able type of ser­vice to those with feel­ings of anx­i­ety, lone­li­ness or fear.

Life­line’s re­search and de­vel­op­ment leader Gareth Ed­wards says it has been push­ing for a ser­vice like Warm­line in Auck­land to mir­ror sim­i­lar helplines in Welling­ton and Can­ter­bury.

He says if peo­ple who are in dis­tress talk with some­one early on, it can pre­vent the prob­lem from es­ca­lat­ing into a more se­ri­ous sit­u­a­tion.

To get in touch with some­one from Warm­line, which runs from 8pm un­til mid­night, con­tact Life­line or your lo­cal health pro­fes­sional.

Photo: JA­SON OX­EN­HAM

Ready to help: Warm­line team leader Ester Re­don says hav­ing suf­fered de­pres­sion makes it eas­ier to help other peo­ple with men­tal health is­sues.

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