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Five winning ways in six languages

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Refugee and new migrant communities in Christchurch have new resources in their own languages to help them develop and maintain mental wellness.

The Mental Health Foundation's five winning ways to wellbeing resources have been translated into six different languages - Nepali, Chinese, Farsi, Somali, Amharic (from the Horn of Africa) and Arabic. They will be officially launched at the Christchurch Migrant Centre on June 22.

The five winning ways are: connect (building relationships means support is available when needed), be active (exercising makes you feel good), take notice (being present and noticing in the moment), keep learning (it gives you confidence and keeps the mind active) and give (even a small gesture is incredibly rewarding).

Mental Health Foundation chief executive Judi Clements says refugee and migrant communities were already vulnerable due to past experiences. This vulnerability highlighted a need for translation of resources into their respective languages.

"The earthquakes in the city in September 2010 and February 2011 challenged everyone's resilience. The winning ways resources will help them flourish," she says.

The resources - posters and postcards - were first released in English by the Mental Health Foundation after the September earthquake and were very popular with Christchurch residents.

"People from refugee and migrant backgrounds tend to be very practical people," Ms Clements says.

"I think, after the earthquakes, everyone needs to see these messages in their own language. That validates them as being part of the community to see something that is relevant to them and their needs."

A health sub-group of Christchurch's Refugee and New Migrant Forum worked with the Mental Health Foundation to translate the resources, which include posters and postcards.

"Partnership Health Canterbury is privileged to support the publication of these resources. Wellbeing affects everyone no matter the langue spoken," Partnership Health Canterbury ethnic liaison Wayne Reid says.

The resources will be distributed by Partnership Health Canterbury, the largest Primary Health Organisation in New Zealand. People can also download them from the Mental Health Foundation's website.

Ms Clements says the resources are also useful training tools for health providers.

"It makes a difference when people can see something in their own language. The five winning ways are strong messages and it is something everyone can relate to," she says.

The resources are available for download after June 22 from www.mentalhealth.org.nz and www.partnershiphealth.org.nz so refugee communities in places outside Christchurch can also access them.

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