Be informed - where to get information about season two of 13 Reasons Why
by Liesje Donkin
in News
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The second season of '13 Reasons Why' was released on Friday, 18 May on Netflix.  All 13 episodes are available to view from release.  Given how controversial and potentially triggering the show it, it is important to be informed about the show, and where to get further support and information if required.

Key themes in this series are:

  • Bullying
  • Sexual assault
  • Drug taking
  • Suicide
  • Domestic violence
  • Gun violence
  • Self-harm
  • Serious assault

Young people are going to watch this series and resources have been developed to reduce the negative impacts of being exposed to the challenging content of this series.  Here are some resources that can help open conversations with young people, or help you to be informed about how to manage any distress that may come from viewing the series:

  1. The Mental Health Foundation has a hub – www.mentalhealth.org.nz/13ReasonsWhy – which includes information on where to go for assistance. The Mental Health Foundation and the Office of Film and Literature Classification are also doing an episode-by-episode discussion guide which covers key themes in each episode, including information about helping vulnerable people who may be affected after viewing these scenes, and where to go for more help.
  2.  The Chief Censor has released a guide for parents: Talking with young people about what they’re watching. The guide is available on the Office of Film and Literature Classification’s website.
  3. ACC have developed a page of key messages on the Mates & Dates website around sexual and dating violence, guidance for talking to young people about these issues and a comprehensive list of support services, including find Support for sensitive claims.
  4. Netflix have also created a website to assist viewers, their parents and caregivers. This includes a brief video clip message from the cast to encourage helpseeking.
  5. CASA resources: https://www.casa.org.nz/news/262-13-discussion-points-for-whanau-caregivers-or-professionals-concerned-about-13-reasons-why and https://www.casa.org.nz/resources/53-13-things-to-try-when-you-re-struggling/file
The impact and role of social connection
by Liesje Donkin
in News
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We are naturally social creatures and biologically wired to socially connect with others. Nobody likes being lonely….even those who may struggle with socially connecting with others. We know that there are mental and physical health consequences of feeling lonely like poor sleep, low mood, low self-esteem, higher stress levels, as well as negatively affecting our immune and cardiovascular systems [1, 2]. The consequences can be different for everybody, and some people may not appear as negatively affected by their level of connectedness (we all have different needs and expectations).

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Suicide prevention strategies: what does the evidence tell use?
by Super User
in News
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Suicide prevention strategies revisited: 10-year systematic review

This recent piece from Lancet Psychiatry reviews the current evidence in suicide prevention and tells use where the evidence is strong and where it is lacking.  It provides an overview of the current literature and the effectiveness of what we are currently doing to help those that are feeling suicidal...

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Mindfulness and self-care
by Liesje Donkin
in News
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They say change is as good as a holiday. While that may be true in some contexts, most of us know that when the changes happening are outside of our control ‘holiday’ is probably not the term we would choose! Many of us work in contexts where there is significant change occurring. An unwanted side-effect of organisational change can be workplace fatigue (commonly known as burnout) which can manifest in dissatisfaction or disenchantment in our work, emotional and physical health effects, or apathy.

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Getting our 2017-2027 national suicide strategy right
by Liesje Donkin
in News
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Suicide is a complex phenomenon therefore approaches to suicide prevention need to be able to address this complexity The World Health Organisation has identified suicide prevention as a global imperative. Effective suicide prevention requires a vision, a plan and a set of strategies which can be achieved through a national suicide prevention strategy.

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Self-soothe kits: wise words from a young person
by Liesje Donkin
in News
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Self Soothe Kits

A self-soothe kit is a great tool that can provide relief in moments of distress. To make one, you put together a collection of items that each function to soothe the five senses (smell, hearing, taste, touch, and sight) in some way. You can then turn to these items before, after, or during stressful events to help yourself calm down and feel better.

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The whale in the room: what you should know about how to manage the Blue Whale Challenge
by Liesje Donkin
in News
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Whilst social media can provide an opportunity for many young people to helpfully connect with others and access supports, there are some online behaviours and sites that aren’t as helpful. Such sites can include websites or social media that encourage self-harming, go into detail about ways and means to harm or kill yourself, act as a platform for bullying, or encourage unskilful risk taking behaviour. Given the risks imposed by such sites, it is important we are aware of these influences in our young people’s lives when checking with them about their supports or areas they feel stress them out.

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13 discussion points for whanau, caregivers, or professionals concerned about '13 Reasons Why’
by Liesje Donkin
in News
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’13 Reasons Why’ is a series currently showing on Netflix in New Zealand (and worldwide).  The series is based on the book ‘Thirteen Reasons Why’ by Jay Asher and focusses on an adolescent whom suicides and the fallout from this.  The show features a series of tapes where the young person describes the events that she perceives have led her suicide including those people that she believes to have had roles in her decision.   These events include the spreading of rumours about her; relationship breakdowns and isolation; bullying; pressure in intimate relationships; sexual assault; and the perception of failure by the system for helping when help was sought (both by the young person and her mother). 

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Feeling stressed or sleeping badly? We've got something that might help...
by Liesje Donkin
in News
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If you’re feeling stressed out, or having trouble sleeping, check this out. It's a site that could improve your stress levels and your sleep...

It’s music that was created for a spa, as a collaboration involving scientists at a market research lab and the founder of the British Academy of Sound Therapy. Researchers reported that listening to it while doing stressful tasks was associated with a reduction of overall anxiety by 65% and physiological arousal by 35%.

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CASA – Looking back and moving forward
by Super User
in News
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This month, CASA is celebrating our ten years of involvement in suicide prevention in NZ. Over this time, our programs and offerings have evolved based on insights we have gained and emerging evidence. Some of these changes are described below.

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Amendment to the Coroners Act
by Super User
in News
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Media Reporting and Suicide: From Goethe to Mozart – how to make sense of suicide reporting in New Zealand

The recent amendments to the Coroners Act in July 2016 have once again increased discussions about whether we should be talking about suicide more publicly in the media.

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