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The Mental Health Foundation runs Mental Health Awareness Week every year.

MHAW is always held during the week of World Mental Health Day (10 October).

MHAW is endorsed by the World Federation for Mental Health and marked in over 150 countries at different times of the year. The Mental Health Foundation has organised MHAW in New Zealand since 1993.

Get ready to unlock one of the biggest secrets to wellbeing – the MHAW 2017 theme is Nature is Key! In 2017, MHAW will be held from 915 October.

This year the theme is: Nature is Key. Last year, we connected with nature for good mental health and wellbeing and we were blown away by the support and enthusiasm for the theme. So we’re doubling down again this year and looking to nature to grow, support and nurture our mental health and wellbeing.

Why nature? Because it’s great for everyone! We’re encouraging Kiwis from all walks of life to stop thinking of nature as something locked away in national parks and forests but as the daisies in the berm, the tree outside the window and the vast, beautiful sky above. Spending time with nature:

Like getting our 5+ a day, we all instinctively know we should be spending more time in the wild but it can feel too hard to cram into our already hectic schedules. This MHAW, we want to show you just how easy it can be to unlock your wellbeing and spend time with the nature you live, play and work amongst every day.

We can’t wait for you to join us. Register now to be kept in the loop about our activities, competitions and resources.

The MHAW Lockout is returning for a second year. On World Mental Health Day (10 October), we’re encouraging employers to lock their staff out of the office for an hour and give them the opportunity to connect with the ordinary nature around their workplace. Last year, hundreds of workplaces downed tools for picnics, walks, tree-climbing, footy games and more and we think it will be even bigger this year. Remember to submit your MHAW or MHAW Lockout event or activity.


General enquiries:



Adrienne Tollemache
Senior Marketer
09 623 4810 ext 851
022 543 1902

Media enquiries:
Sophie Lowery
Senior Communications & Marketing Officer
09 632 4810
022 131 9982

The 5 natural ways

Five natural ways to wellbeing


Me Whakawhanaunga 

Connecting with nature is great for you! The beauty is in how simple it can be. Remember if you can’t get outside, you can always bring the outdoors in.


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Nature provides, it gives everything needed to not only survive, but thrive. Here’s some cool ways you can give back to nature:


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Take notice

 Me aro tonu

It's common to go about your daily life, oblivious to your natural environment. Take some time to be mindful of what’s happening around you.


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Keep learning

Me ako tonu

There’s always something new to learn and discover when you interact with nature:


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Be active

Me kori tonu

Getting outside exposure and exercising is good for your overall health and wellbeing, plus it strengthens you connection with nature:


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