Gumboot Up NZ! Mike King and mental health charity I AM HOPE calls for New Zealanders to wear gumboots on Friday 5 April to support kids in need.
New Zealander of the Year, Mike King and I AM HOPE are asking New Zealanders to wear their gumboots to work or school on Gumboot Friday (5 April) for a gold coin donation. It's a positive and 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.
For many, having depression or anxiety can feel like walking through mud every day. By wearing gumboots and spending a day walking in someone else’s shoes, New Zealanders can “show people who are struggling that they’re not alone, and that it’s important and normal to talk about the things that they’re dealing with internally,” King says.
“Now more than ever, we need kiwis to reach out to friends and whānau. On Gumboot Friday, we want kiwis to have lots of fun and take the opportunity to ask those you’re closest to if they’re ok.”
King announced Gumboot Friday when he was named Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year 2019. Since then, King and I AM HOPE have been overwhelmed with the positive response from around Aotearoa. Schools, businesses, sports clubs and individuals around the country have started their own Gumboot Friday events and opened the conversation around mental wellbeing in their communities.
“The amazing messages of support we’ve received from New Zealanders shows how much we all care, and that kiwis want to do more to help each other when our friends and whānau are going through rough times.”
Gumboot Friday aims to raise $2million to fund counselling for school aged kids. King says that initially this felt like a lofty goal but based on the level of support he’s received from around New Zealand, he’s confident the target will be met.
For more information about Gumboot Friday and how to donate, visit www.iamhope.org.nz.
For media enquiries and more information contact Amber Hall 027 696 7973 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- END -
On Friday 5 April, King and his team will be based where he can make the most difference – in schools talking to kids and engaging with gumbooted supporters at The Warriors game against the Titans at Mt Smart Stadium.
Many high-profile New Zealanders have thrown their support behind the cause. Taika Waititi, Rhys Darby, Parris Goebel, Sam Neil, Rachel Hunter, Sir Peter Jackson and artist Mr G are just a few of the high-profile kiwis who have promoted Gumboot Friday. Many corporates have also got on board, with Kiwibank, AMP, Skellerup, Spark Foundation, Farmlands, NZME and many, many more generously providing their time and resources to help make Gumboot Friday happen.
King says Gumboot Friday is set to become an annual event, with planning already underway for 2020.
Donations to Gumboot Friday
All donations from Gumboot Friday will go towards supporting kids in need. For information on how to donate, visit www.iamhope.org.nz/donate. Funds in the Kiwibank Gumboot Friday appeal account can only be accessed by a registered mental health professional on receipt of an invoice. All funds in the Gumboot Friday account go directly to kids counselling sessions.
NZ Mental Health Statistics
Figures released last year by the Ministry of Justice, showed New Zealand’s suicide rates had increased for four consecutive years and are one of the leading countries in the world for youth suicide. Last year in New Zealand 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 waiting up to six months to receive the counselling they so urgently need.
The Key to Life Charitable Trust
I AM HOPE is a brand of The Key to Life Charitable Trust, a fundraising and advocacy organisation, which supports young people who are struggling with their mental health. We help connect young people with existing counsellors or therapists and provide funding, so that kids get help as soon as they need it.
The Key to Life Charitable Trust is a registered charity (registration number CC44260) and overseen by a board of trustees, including mental health professionals.