Mental health facilitation guides

The four facilitation guides below are designed as a resource for occupational health and safety professionals, practitioners, and representatives as well as human resource professionals who are looking to raise the level of awareness and support around mental health. These guides and the relevant exercises may be useful ways to create improved mental health and wellbeing in the workplace. Most of the exercises are short and can be delivered at staff meetings, health and safety training courses, etc.

Facilitation guide module 1: What is mental health and why is it an important issue?

Facilitation guide module 2: Mental health and physical health

Facilitation guide module 3: Whanau connection

Facilitation guide module 4: Wairua – mental and spiritual health and resilience

The Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand notes that it is also important to involve employees in the organisational mental wellbeing approach, as people’s personal experience can be of value in how language and examples relevant to the workforce are used. Many larger organisations will have natural mental wellbeing champions, who will enthusiastically involve themselves in helping meet the wellbeing goals.

However, in any organisation there will be a range of mental health experiences across the workforce, from workers who are experiencing optimal and positive mental health to workers who are mentally unwell and/or who lack general mental wellbeing, or who may be highly stressed or distressed due to their work or home life, or perhaps a traumatic life event.  It is important, therefore, to understand the state of the audience (that is, how individuals are feeling), and the context (such as adverse events within the organisation) when delivering these workshops.

It is also important to recognise that we may not have the expertise to deal with people who are unwell. In the event that someone becomes distressed while attending one of the workshops, it is best to contact the appropriate people within the organisation for assistance. There are also a number of services available in New Zealand that offer support, information and help, for example National Telehealth Service’s Need to talk Text 1737 or the Healthline, telephone: 0800 611 116.