Equip is a leading mental health organisation, an extension of Windsor Park Church, providing an innovative model of care, effective support and education in the greater Auckland region.

We have some exciting activities planned for the winter months and would love to see you there.
Friday, May 24, 2019
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Join us for morning tea as we walk beside you on your journey of faith.
Friday, May 24, 2019
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A grief education programme for adults bereaved by suicide.
Friday, May 24, 2019
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1 in 5 NZ adults experience mental illness in any year. Would you know how to respond?
Friday, May 24, 2019
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Recovery, Mental Health, Achieve, Goals

Moving out of our teenage years and into early adult life should be a very exciting period. We have so many options for study and careers. We can travel and enjoy our new independence. Fun, adventures, progress, and romance – what a fantastic time of life! But for many of us that is exactly when we first received a diagnosis of mental illness. Schizophrenia and other mental illnesses frequently charge into our lives in the late teens and early twenties. Just when life should be so good, it suddenly seems so bad.  All our dreams for the future can evaporate away as we face the possibility of long-term mental health struggles. It feels so unfair.  But be encouraged: our plans may need to change, but we can still have a fantastic life. In fact, goals and dreams are an important part of our recovery.

 

a.       Who we are now is not who we will always be. No one truly knows how much potential they have. True, mental health challenges might be having a huge impact on us but, even if that continues for a long time, we can still learn and grow. It may be that we will take a slower route but we should not limit our dreams because of how we see ourselves now. The ‘you’ you will become in one, two, five and ten years time is going to be so much wiser, more knowledgeable, mature and experienced. You will enjoy being that person! You will be proud to be you!  Your dreams might be out of reach of the current version of yourself but that future self will be able to nail it!  

b.       Yard by yard is very hard but inch by inch is a cinch. If you have grown up with metric measurements, you may be wondering what that means! Basically: big, overly ambitious steps might fail but small steps will succeed.  Keep moving forwards towards your goals, but do it in small steps. If I tried to run a marathon today I’d collapse in exhaustion!  I’d better start with  tiny ‘inch sized steps’, such as walking around the block.  If I do that three of four times this week, next week, I’ll walk two blocks a day. If I keep notching up that process, bit by bit, I’ll be running a marathon within a year! 

c.       Congratulations! Notice and praise yourself on your progress.  If we couldn’t get out of bed before midday last week, but this week we were up and dressed by 10:00a.m., that is huge progress we can be proud of. That is not the end goal, but it is a significant step in the right direction.  It reminds us that we are not stuck. We’re growing, moving on, getting better… and getting closer to those goals.  

d.       Bigger goals at a bigger distance. Motivational speakers always urge us to set huge audacious goals, to shoot for the moon and go for the mountain top. That is fine. But those speakers have no idea what that advice sounds like to someone with depression. Big goals motivate most people, but if we are depressed, they can actually demotivate us, if we don’t ‘handle’ those dreams properly.  Have the big goals, but stretch the time line and put more modest, but still significant intermediate goals, into your plans. Instead of the goal, “Graduate from Med School in five years”, change it to, “Enroll and pass some papers and let’s gradually master the stress of daily study and exams. Med School will keep. I’ll get there when I am ready.” Instead of, “I’m going to find someone and be married and have a family by thirty”, change it to, “I’m going to be healthy and whole for any future partner I might have. I deserve happiness, and so do they, so I am not going to rush ahead of my recovery.” The dreams are fine, but be prepared to adjust the timing.

e.       Dreams do change.  The reality is that some of us lose jobs and relationships because of our mental health problems.  I won’t disrespect your pain and grief by trying to put some rosy spin on this. It is really sad and hard.  By all means, grieve the loss of that job or relationship or plan – it’s healthy to. It’s an obstacle… but it is not the end of the road. It will be hard after a setback like this, and even harder if we are also impacted by an episode of poor mental health at the same time, but the nature of life is that as one door closes, others open.   And… new dreams. This is not magic or wishful thinking: if we don’t let set-backs drive us into frozen despair, we eventually move into new chapters of life, and they can be very good chapters.  A fantastic attitude to have: “I’m either up, or I’m getting up!”.   

  

Goal setting is a great therapeutic thing to do. It may even be something you would like to do with a friend or support worker.

o   What am I fascinated by and gives me pleasure?

o   What gives me a sense of accomplishment?

o   What do others say that I am good at?

o   Is there someone living the type of life I would like to live?

o   What are my values? (The best goals flow out of our core beliefs).

o   What would I like to achieve in life?

Let the big goals come and settle in your mind and, better still, settle on a page that you write out. Then, starting with the tiniest steps, “What do I have to start doing to reach those goals?”

Disclaimer

These blogs are offered with the sincere hope that they will be beneficial to people with mental health challenges, their families and the wider public. However, a big lesson from the history of science is that anyone can be wrong! Therefore, this disclaimer: though written in good faith, the authors and publishers cannot guarantee the accuracy of this content, or its applicability to a particular situation.  Any decisions or course of action taken as a consequence of this content must be entirely the reader’s responsibility.  In no way should this content be used as a basis to contradict or ignore the advice of a medical or mental health professional.

Wednesday, June 12, 2019
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Many people would call Winston Churchill the greatest man of the 20th century. He lead Britain to victory in the Second World War and won a Nobel Prize for literature to boot. Not many people, though, know that he suffered recurring depression throughout his life. He called it his “Black Dog” and he would sink into such despair he would spend weeks, sometimes months, in bed, with no energy, no appetite and unable to concentrate. He hated railway platforms or ship railings: he was desperately afraid he would throw himself off.

It is reassuring to know that people can have mental health issues and still have a great life.

The nature of most mental health problems is that they recur but there are things you can do to lessen the odds of a relapse.

Stick to your meds. With schizophrenia in particular, relapses tend to occur most often when people do not adhere to their prescribed medication.

Sleep. Regular, good sleep is so important, but it can be very hard. A few things that help with sleeping are a strict bedtime, avoiding screens (like phones, games and TV) for an hour before bed, no caffeine after midday, allow time for your meal to digest before bed time and keep pets off your bed at night.

Manage stress.   It’s good to be busy with things we enjoy, but monitor how you are feeling. We should be prepared to disappoint a few people by saying “No” to them. Their disappointment is better than our burnout. Exercise and fun are vital for giving us resilience and maintaining our mental health!

Skip the drugs. Drug abuse and relapse seem to go together. Sometimes it might be that people feel themselves becoming unwell so they take drugs to feel better, sometimes it might be the drug use that actually brings the episode on. Either way, the drugs make things much worse.

Support.  Support might be from professionals or just the social support that comes from family and friends.

Even when you actively do all you can to stay healthy, mental health problems can recur.  It can be really dispiriting to realize your own “Black Dog” is coming back for a visit, but here are some tips.

                You know the signs. Sometimes a full-blown relapse happens quite suddenly, but often there are signs that, if we spot them, can help us know what we are dealing with.  It might be irritability, tiredness, fears, or people becoming concerned about our behaviour, thinking or speech. This time around they are not mysteries, they are signposts that we know how to read. 

You know this Black Dog. One of the scariest aspects of becoming mentally unwell is wondering what is going on. It’s no fun getting sick again, but at least we know what we are dealing with. That can take a lot of terror out of the situation. We also know where to get help and what strategies we might need to take regarding work, the care of our children etc.

Remember, this is for a season. We’ve been here before, and we know it passes in time.  We have lots of times of wellness between episodes when life is really good.   

Remember the strategies that worked last time – they will probably work again.

Get on to it quickly. If we act as soon as we suspect we are sliding into unwellness, we may be able to prevent a full-blown relapse.

You have a crew. Unlike the first time we became unwell, we probably have  family, friends and workmates who know you need time, space, support and encouragement.


http://theconversation.com/winston-churchill-and-his-black-dog-of-greatness-36570 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3599855/

https://www.webmd.com/depression/depression-relapse#1

https://metro.co.uk/2017/09/23/how-an-anxiety-relapse-makes-you-feel-and-what-you-can-do-about-it-6923048/

https://www.bphope.com/ask-the-doctor-dealing-with-relapse/

Disclaimer

These blogs are offered with the sincere hope that they will be beneficial to people with mental health challenges, their families and the wider public. However, a big lesson from the history of science is that anyone can be wrong! Therefore, this disclaimer: though written in good faith, the authors and publishers cannot guarantee the accuracy of this content, or its applicability to a particular situation.  Any decisions or course of action taken as a consequence of this content must be entirely the reader’s responsibility.  In no way should this content be used as a basis to contradict or ignore the advice of a medical or mental health professional.

Wednesday, June 05, 2019
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Thank goodness: attitudes have changed in society towards people with mental health problems. Ignorant and unsympathetic opinions about mental illness are retreating in the face of public information campaigns. High profile people have bravely shared their stories about depression.  Language is changing. Even though many people are still too casual about using words like ‘insane’ and ‘crazy’, you will usually hear people speak more respectfully. In old movies and TV shows you used to see terrible portrayals of people with mental illness, making them out to be villains or objects for humour.  You don’t see that any more, though Hollywood still isn’t good at realistically portraying mental unwellness. 

As a culture, things are getting better but it is still far from perfect. Some employers can be very sympathetic about an employee who needs time off because they have the ‘flu or a broken leg, but they have not yet learnt to deal with their workers’ mental health problems in the same enlightened way. 

If you have a mental health disorder, the reality is that society’s attitudes may not be improving fast enough to spare you from experiencing embarrassment and discrimination. I wish that were not so. May be if this article is really old when you read it, I hope you can laugh and say, “Wow! It was tough back in 2019!” but, in this present time, it really can be tough.

What can you do to limit the stigma from hurting you?

1.      1. Know that you are okay.
Sure: our brains function differently at times, but we are still people of worth. If others can’t see that, they are mistaken. The important thing is that we don’t make the same mistake.

2.      2. Have some phrases ready.
We may need to educate people around us. There are ways to describe our mental health problems that will help people understand us better. “At times I struggle with my moods.” “I do have times when I get very low. Be patient: I’ll be getting better.”

3.      3. Not everyone has to know.
Just like any other health issue, our mental health is a private matter. Of course, sometimes our mood or behaviour does impact others and they may deserve an explanation but, in general, we can be as discrete as we want to be.

4.       4.Realize we are not that different.
One in four New Zealanders experience some mental health issue.

5.       5.We have rights.
We are protected from discrimination by all sorts of laws, as well as by the rules of common decency. If you are ever treated unfairly, your support person or health professional can help you because ‘right is on your side’.

6.       6.Have courage.
It is amazing how acting with confidence can help us feel better. And I know: it is an act! It can be so scary wondering what people think about us. There is no way to know, and little we can do about it, so the best strategy is pull out our courage and charge on with a smile.

Disclaimer

These blogs are offered with the sincere hope that they will be beneficial to people with mental health challenges, their families and the wider public. However, a big lesson from the history of science is that anyone can be wrong! Therefore, this disclaimer: though written in good faith, the authors and publishers cannot guarantee the accuracy of this content, or its applicability to a particular situation.  Any decisions or course of action taken as a consequence of this content must be entirely the reader’s responsibility.  In no way should this content be used as a basis to contradict or ignore the advice of a medical or mental health professional.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019
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Our programmes support young people to grow in resilience and the ability to manage their life situations and ultimately support them to shape a positive future.
 
 




MORE INFORMATION

Equip's Core Values  

APPLICATIONS CLOSE

4pm Monday 22 July 2019


apply now

If you have the skills we seek, plus a can do attitude and want to belong to a supportive and engaging team making a real difference in our community, we would love to hear from you!

So if you’re looking for a job that’s more than just a job, download an application pack.  Please quote reference number TLBY on the application.


applications require:

Completed Equip Job Application Form (download an Application Form. ) 
Separate Curriculum Vitae
Cover Letter 
Copy of Driver Licence (front & back)
Copy of photo ID page of passport or NZ full birth certificate
Current Working Visa (if applicable)
Police Vetting form (download here)

Send the above completed forms to:

Email to: 
front.desk@equip.net.nz , or

Personal Delivery to: 
Equip
550 East Coast Road
Mairangi Bay
North Shore , or

Post to: 
Equip
PO Box 65 385
Mairangi Bay
Auckland 0754

Friday, June 14, 2019
We are looking for people to join our dynamic team for the awake overnight position to provide support to guests during the hours of 10:30pm – 07:30am on Thursday to Sunday nights.
 



Koromiko House is a leading mental health respite service, providing a safe, calm, nurturing and home like environment for up to seven guests, who will stay with us on average for periods of between 4 to 10 days.

We are looking for people to join our dynamic team for the awake overnight position to provide support to guests during the hours of 10:30pm – 07:30am on Thursday to Sunday nights. There is an on call Team Leader available at all times should you need any extra support.

This role is varied and unique as you will be responding to the needs of the guests staying.  You will need to have a holistic focus and the people skills to support people in their recovery by encouraging good sleep routine, listening and supporting with strategies when they are unable to sleep or distressed, and to respond to any challenging situations as they arise. You will also be completing some basic administration and IT tasks and doing some household tasks to maintain the house cleanliness.

WHO ARE WE LOOKING FOR?

The ideal applicant(s) will be a calm, caring, and conscientious person who works well for extended times by themselves. They will need excellent listening and communication skills and a willingness and interest in supporting people with their recovery.  They will have a person centered approach and align with Equip’s values.

  • You will need to have or be willing to work toward the Level 4 National Certificate in Health and Wellbeing or have an equivalent qualification.

  • Relevant experience in mental health, addictions, or disability work would be an advantage.

  • You will need to have NZ residency or a valid NZ work permit

  • You’ll receive a thorough induction and on-going training.

  • Most importantly, we are looking for a team player with a can do and resilient attitude.


.WHO IS EQUIP?

We are an independent mental health Not for Profit organisation associated with Windsor Park Baptist Church and have a strong Christian ethos. With a staff of around 70, we are a values led organisation who truly care about the people we work with and for. We pride ourselves on our professionalism, supportive, inclusive culture and our success in making a positive difference in the lives of others.

OUR VALUES:

We put our faith into action

If we can say ‘yes’ we will

      • Our people matter


MORE INFORMATION

Job Description
Equip's Core Values 

APPLICATIONS CLOSE

4pm Monday 22 July 2019


apply now

If you are looking for a job that provides you with a great team and an opportunity to have a hands-on role supporting others, download an application pack from our website: www.equip.net.nz.  Please quote reference number KOROAN on the application


applications require:

Completed Equip Job Application Form (download an Application Form. ) 
Separate Curriculum Vitae
Cover Letter 
Copy of Driver Licence (front & back)
Copy of photo ID page of passport or NZ full birth certificate
Current Working Visa (if applicable)
Police Vetting form (download here)


Send the above completed forms to:
Email to: 
office@equip.net.nz , or

Personal Delivery to: 
Equip
550 East Coast Road
Mairangi Bay
North Shore , or

Post to: 
Equip
PO Box 65 385
Mairangi Bay
Auckland 0754

Wednesday, June 12, 2019
A CSW works in partnership with the other person on goals leading to a satisfying life. The work entails helping service users reach identified goals and maximise strengths.





EQUIP’S STAFF SAY:

“I LOVE THE CULTURE AT EQUIP.  I HAVE NEVER KNOWN A PLACE WHERE YOU FEEL SO VALUED AND WHERE YOU ARE PUT FIRST.”

“I TOOK THE JOB TO CHANGE OTHER PEOPLES’ LIVES, BUT IT CHANGED MINE.”


WHO IS EQUIP?

We are an independent mental health Not for Profit organisation associated with Windsor Park Baptist Church and have a strong Christian ethos.  With a staff of around 70, we are a values led organisation who truly care about the people we work with and for.  We pride ourselves on our supportive, inclusive culture and our success is making a positive difference in the lives of others

ABOUT THE ROLE:

A CSW works in partnership with the other person on goals leading to a satisfying life. You’ll work autonomously with service users living in the community in the North Shore, West Auckland and Rodney areas. The work entails helping service users reach identified goals and maximise strengths.

Hours: Mainly from Monday to Friday with some flexibility required to meet the needs of the service users.

You’ll receive a thorough induction and on-going training. Equip will support you to commence relevant training (Level 4 Certificate in Mental Health and Well-being), or you will have completed this already. Higher level relevant qualifications negate this need. Having advanced skills and qualifications in the field of alcohol and drugs would be an additional advantage


WHAT WILL I NEED?
  • A genuine passion to work with people, being a good listener and communicator
  • Be computer literate
  • Be a NZ resident or have a valid NZ work visa
  • Full NZ driver licence
  • Be a team player who is self motivated and can work autonomously

APPLICATIONS CLOSE

4pm Monday 24th June 2019.


apply now

If you have the skills we seek, plus a can do attitude and want to belong to a supportive and engaging team making a real difference in our community, we would love to hear from you!


applications require:

Completed Equip Job Application Form (download an Application Form. ) 
Separate Curriculum Vitae
Cover Letter 
Copy of Driver Licence (front & back)
Copy of photo ID page of passport or NZ full birth certificate
Current Working Visa (if applicable)
Police Vetting form (download here)


Send the above completed forms to:
Email to: 
office@equip.net.nz , or

Personal Delivery to: 
Equip
550 East Coast Road
Mairangi Bay
North Shore , or

Post to: 
Equip
PO Box 65 385
Mairangi Bay
Auckland 0754


Tuesday, June 11, 2019
Often we are just too hard on ourselves. It is time to be kind to yourself. Find out how self compassionate you are!
Often we are just too hard on ourselves. Go to this excellent website and do the Self Compassion assessment here. Be kind to yourself today!

Thursday, February 22, 2018
Check out the latest events here! Come connect with us.
Saturday, May 09, 2015
Helping to cope with depression – there is a way through

Information on Depression
Get Self-Help information and strategies from www.depression.org.nz

Feeling Depressed?
Hear How Young Kiwis Got Through Depression. www.thelowdown.co.nz

Saturday, May 09, 2015
"Equip visits have built up my confidence again."
I look forward to my Community Support Worker (CSW)’s visits and the company. More often than not, we have had fine weather to go out and sit in the park. This has built up my confidence to get out and back into the community once more. One of the things that has given me great joy and a deep, deep feeling of peace within me is going back to church. Once I expressed this was something I would like to do again, my CSW got Carol to come and visit. Carol found a local church that holds a weekly communion service on a Wednesday. This has meant a lot to me. A bonus good cup of coffee and homemade cake afterward gives me the opportunity to get to know one or two of the other folk there. I am very grateful to Equip for this opportunity and their visits have meant so much to me.


Friday, May 08, 2015
"Kevin’s family love having him closer to them again."

When Kevin first came to Equip he didn’t really have any social contacts and this wasn’t helped by him having no phone or means of communication. Kevin’s first goal was to get a cell phone which he has now and is used to keep in contact with his family.

Over time Kevin was supported by Equip staff to get out of the house and have social contact with his family as he was very isolated living on his own and having no friends... He joined a social group which helped him have some contacts with people who had common interests to himself and it gave him somewhere to go. This led to Kevin going out to visit his friends down the road and had a few visits with his family which he really enjoyed. He said it made him feel really good spending time with family but he didn’t think they would want him to live with them.

Kevin had stated in the past that he wanted to get back into his old work as a builder but hadn’t made any steps towards this. During the visit to his family home he did some building work and discovered how much he had enjoyed doing it. It made him realize that he was capable of working again. Kevin and his support worker problem solved ways to look for and get building work. He ended up finding a job through a friend which he wasn’t needed for in the end but he was really happy about the prospect of getting work and an income.

Kevin’s suppork worker spoke on and off with Kevin’s family members and let them know how much Kevin enjoyed going to their place and spending time with them. In fact Kevin ended up spending Christmas with his famliy whereas normally he would be on his own.

Just recently, Kevin decided to move in with family and is enjoying greater connection with them and his confidence had grown to a point where he was able to make the relocation arrangements himself. Kevin’s family say they love having him closer to them again and are supporting his efforts to get permanent work.




Friday, May 08, 2015
"A lot of situations and things puzzled me."
Hi, I’m Vaoesea and I grew up in Hastings. Just before I went to College I moved with my family to West Auckland and completed my schooling there. When I finished schooling I went to University but struggled and did not cope. I also seemed to be unable to get a job, had no friends, no direction and was shy and lacking in confidence. And for some reason I was angry all the time. Something was not quite right but I didn’t know what it was. I ended up seeing a Psychiatrist and despite this was having trouble communicating with my family. I would head off for long walks in the bush and one night spent the whole night sitting under a tree in the Waitakeres.

I guess if I was to describe how I felt at the time, it was that I was angry a lot and also I started to experience a sensation of dreaming while I was awake. The things I dreamed about felt real but over time I got to realise that they weren’t. A lot of situations and things puzzled me.

This all came to a head one day when I had an argument with my mother and went to the Police to make a complaint against her. The Police got a Doctor to come and check me out. I was taken in a Police car to an inpatient mental health unit, put in isolation and strip searched. It was very degrading and frightening. And I struggled with being separated from family.

After a period of time I came out of the hospital and went back home. I became fascinated and absorbed by the war in Kuwait.

Eventually I moved into what was called a ‘therapeutic community’ in the city where I lived in a big house with a number of other people who had mental health issues. While there I got my first job in a lunch bar in Queen Street but had to leave it because it did not work out.

I left the community and followed my boyfriend up to Whangarei but unfortunately we broke up soon after and my Mother and brother had to come up and get me and I was once again admitted to an inpatient unit for a time. It was during that second stay that I got offered some therapy which I found calming and helpful.

After leaving the unit I went back to the therapeutic community and learnt how to be a reliable flatmate, budget and socialise.

Eventually, I got the chance to move into a three bedroom flat with two other people who received support from a mental health support service. This time things went better. I got a cleaning job which I seemed to manage quite well and was able to hold on to.

Things change a lot in mental health services but a change that was good for me was that the flat we were in became available for us to rent independently. We all got our names on the lease and each of us received support from Equip. This was the first time in 15 years that I felt I had some real independence. I got well enough to not need support at all.

When I heard about the Client Advisor role coming up at Equip I was encouraged by others to apply. Whilst I did not think I probably had the confidence or skills to do the role something urged me to give it a go.

I have been in that role for five years and have been stretched and learnt a lot. Because my job is on the North Shore I decided to move there and most weekends I spend with my brother at his place.

Who would have thought that the University drop out is now advising an organisation with 60 staff and 220 clients how to put the person at the centre of their services and giving that service feedback from service users as to what is working and what is not.

Who knows what else I can do – it will be exciting to find out.


Friday, May 08, 2015
"Equip gave me hope and a sense of progress when I had none"
It was hard waiting for such a long time in hospital but Equip staff really gave me and my mum hope that one day I would get out and have my own flat and a job.  They helped me work on my CV and confidence skills and while the waiting for somewhere to live took awhile, I worked on these things.  My mum was involved too and she offered me a lot of support and she and Equip worked together.  Through Equip I got to see a Dietician every week and she helped me to lose weight and get fit.

I am out of hospital now and whilst I am in supported accommodation I know that eventually I will get my own flat and a job.

Equip gave me hope and a sense of progress when I had none.

Tim


Friday, May 08, 2015