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Take part in our Lockout and unlock your wellbeing!

The MHAW Lockout is returning for a second year! On World Mental Health Day (Tuesday, 10 October), we’re encouraging employers across New Zealand 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.

From 12–1pm, Kiwis will head outside and discover how happiness and wellbeing blooms when you start to connect with the nature that surrounds you every day.

“Last year, hundreds of workplaces downed tools for picnics, walks, tree-climbing and footy games, and we think this year’s lockout will be even bigger,” MHF chief executive Shaun Robinson says.

“We’re encouraging Kiwis to stop thinking of nature as something locked away in national parks and forests but as the daisies on the berm, the tree outside the window and the vast, beautiful sky above.”

Every organisation that registers their participation in the Lockout on the MHAW calendar will receive an advanced copy of the Five Ways to Wellbeing at Work toolkit! In it, you'll find a range of factsheets, tips and templates to make it easy for you to promote the Five Ways to Wellbeing to your staff.

Win prizes!

Workplaces registered on our MHAW calendar will go into a draw to win a small slice of nature to bring indoors! Be in to win three framed plant walls from Hire Plants – they’re a living piece of art, framed and ready to hang or free stand to create an interior garden.

Individuals signed up to our Lockout event on Facebook will be in to win a free float session voucher redeemable in AucklandWellington and Christchurch. Floating in a tank full of Epsom salts (magnesium sulphate) helps people to practice mindfulness, and release stress, anxiety and muscle tension.

Please see our prize Terms and Conditions.

Why nature?

There are simple things we can all do that will make a huge difference to the mental health and wellbeing of all New Zealanders. Research has shown that spending time in nature is great for mental and physical health. Spending time in nature:

Workplace wellbeing matters

While many workplaces such as hospitals and call centres won't be able to close down for an hour, other workplace employers who think they simply can’t spare their staff for sixty minutes are practising false economy, Mr Robinson says.

“Busy, stressful workplaces can lead to reduced productivity, absenteeism and high turnover. The MHAW Lockout is a great way to plant the seed with your staff that their health and wellbeing matters,” Mr Robinson says.

How to spend time in nature?

Like getting our 5+ a day, we all instinctively know we should be spending more time in nature 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. Here are some ideas – even for those who, for any reason, can’t leave their home or workplace.

Our Facebook page is a great way to see what people are planning for their Lockout.

For more information please contact:

Sophie Lowery
Senior Communications & Marketing Officer
09 623 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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