Green MP Chloe Swarbrick has written a heartbreaking post on social media about her mental health battle and how she wants to help current young Kiwis suffering by getting behind Mike's King's charity.
The Gumboot UP NZ campaign, which aims to help young Kiwis get free counselling, has become well-known since the I AM HOPE Kiwibank Facebook frame went viral last week.
The Kiwibank Facebook frame quickly became a success as the bank donated $100,000 to the Gumboot Friday account.
In April, Kiwis can get behind the cause by wearing gumboots, which is something Swarbrick encourages Kiwis to do in her social media posts.
"I've got depression and anxiety. I first noticed things spiralling out of control when I was in my mid-teens. I originally coped in deeply unhealthy ways.
"I was lucky to have people who came into my life that picked me up, stood by me through darkness and held me when I cried. I still have bad days, but I'm fortunate to have people to lean on. Too many of us hide that darkness, sometimes with utterly devastating consequences.
"We can do our jobs and study through our education and interact with society but it all feels a bit hollow, yet heavy. I think telling people they've got to speak up in the context of that black hole can often miss the point.
"People need to feel safe to speak up. People need to know there'll be help, and they won't be told just to shut up and put up.
"Because of this, I'm joining Mike King and other NZers on April 5th to #gumbootupNZ and make mental ill health - and support in our communities - visible.
"Charity cannot and should not ever be expected to take up the mantle of providing all support for all people, but with a system buckling under pressure and a culture losing people to silence, I'll always back those pushing for change. Chuck on your gummies Tuesday 5th April in solidarity."
On their website, I AM HOPE have asked Kiwis to share awareness by wearing gumboots on April 5, for Gumboot Friday.
"Having depression is like walking through mud every day. So on Friday 5 April 2019, we're asking you to show your support. Put your gumboots on, give a gold coin, and take a walk in their shoes for a just one day," I AM HOPE says.
"It's a fun way for Kiwis to join in the mental health conversation, while raising money to provide FREE and timely counselling for any kid in need."
I AM HOPE explained that 100 per cent of the donations would go to the kids.
"All donations are deposited by you into the Kiwibank Gumboot Friday account. The money will then go directly to the registered health professional upon receipt of an invoice to Mike King's #gumbootupnz fund.
"Last year in NZ 137 young people died by suicide and it is estimated another 3500 attempted to take their own lives. While Government agencies are doing their best some kids are stuck waiting up to six months to receive the counselling they so urgently need."
If your are wanting to donate to the Gumboot Friday Fund via the Key to Life Trust Give-a-little Page.
For more information visit: www.iamhope.org.nz
WHERE TO GET HELP:
If you are worried about your or someone else's mental health, the best place to get help is your GP or local mental health provider. However, if you or someone else is in danger or endangering others, call police immediately on 111.
OR IF YOU NEED TO TALK TO SOMEONE ELSE:
• LIFELINE: 0800 543 354 or 09 5222 999 within Auckland (available 24/7)
• SUICIDE CRISIS HELPLINE: 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOKO) (available 24/7)
• YOUTHLINE: 0800 376 633 ,free text 234 or email firstname.lastname@example.org online chat.
• NEED TO TALK? Free call or text 1737 (available 24/7)
• KIDSLINE: 0800 543 754 (available 24/7)
• WHATSUP: 0800 942 8787 (1pm to 11pm)
• DEPRESSION HELPLINE: 0800 111 757
• SAMARITANS – 0800 726 666.