Gumboot Friday Fund Over Subscribed

The Gumboot Friday fund has been so successful that the Key to Life Charitable Trust has had to “pause” any new client applications until additional funds can be found.

Originally set up to respond to the gaps in services for young people requiring mental health counselling and support, the fund raised over $1.6 million dollars, and has funded over 6000 sessions of counselling for children and young people that would have otherwise not have received timely help.

“We’ve seen demand skyrocket since the beginning of August” says Mike King, Gumboot Friday co-founder. “We always knew there was a demand there, and we understood there was a chance that the fund would run out eventually. We just didn’t know how quickly it would run out and now the pre-approved treatments exceed the money left in the Gumboot Friday account, and so we have to pause to take stock and seek additional funding and donations.”

I AM HOPE currently has pre-approved treatment for another 6000 Gumboot Friday sessions at an estimated cost of $900,000.00. The fund itself is standing at just over $800,000.00, with The Key to Life Charitable Trust picking up the shortfall and honouring all existing funding commitments.

“We have been victims of our own success. We’ve set up a nationwide counselling service, with the intention of filling known gaps in the sector, and to help people access treatment.” says Kyle MacDonald, Key to Life Board Chair and Psychotherapist. “What we didn’t predict was how quickly it would be taken up, and that our system would be so simple and user friendly that the community would prefer to use I AM HOPE funding rather than existing Government funded services. In particular, in the last few weeks we’ve seen numbers take off due to GP’s increasingly referring families to us, rather than existing services, because they know their patients will actually be seen.”

Whilst the Trust understands that pausing further funding requests will cause frustration, and there are currently a further 350 potential clients that have been asked to wait, and more requests being made every day, further funds and donations are being actively sought so the Gumboot Friday fund can continue to provide the help that is so desperately needed in our communities, schools and families.

Donations to the fund can be made via the Give a Little Page (see: or contact the Key to Life Charitable Trust direct via


For media enquiries and more information contact Mike King or Kyle MacDonald

or email

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 3,500 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 an initiative by 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.

I AM HOPE Funded Counselling

All donations made to the Gumboot Friday Fund directly support kids in need. Donations can only be accessed by a registered mental health professional on receipt of an invoice

More information


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PO BOX 97999

Manukau 2241


New Zealand

I AM HOPEGumboot Friday and Spare Change are proudly brought to you by: 

The Key to Life Charitable Trust

Call 111 immediately for any medical emergency

Text or call 1737 any time, 24 hours a day. You’ll get to talk to (or text with) a trained counsellor, completely free of charge.



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