COVID-19 is having a significant economic impact on many New Zealanders.
A number of organisations are focused on how to manage the employment and economic implications of losing a job. Together with our partners, Te Hiringa Hauora identified that the mental health impacts of losing a job is a serious issue that was not being adequately addressed.
What is Te Hiringa Hauora doing?
Te Hiringa Hauora recently launched an area of work focused on providing support to people dealing with the mental health impacts related to the financial hardships caused by COVID-19.
As part of this work we looked into the journey that people go through after losing a job. As set out in the illustration below, we identified where people could be open to communications as well as what that messaging might focus on. We are using this 'journey map' as part of our guidance for our messaging.
Download the map [PDF, 153 KB]
To ensure our messages will be relevant to key audiences we have run a number of focus groups with young people who had lost their job. This helped us understand their experiences and journeys as well as finding out the advice they would give to others.
One of the key findings in the focus groups was that often people's first reaction was to shut down, not talk to anyone, and try and figure the issues out alone. To combat this approach, Te Hiringa Hauora has done the following.
- In early October we partnered with a number of Māori and Pasifika influencers to use their platforms to spread our messages in their own words. This helps people realise that it's OK to talk about difficulties being faced. View the posts
- We also partnered with five young people who had lost their jobs to develop videos and other content that help share their thoughts and advice. These videos are being distributed through a range of channels including YouTube and other social media. View (and download) the content.
In addition to the above, we have partnered with Trade Me Jobs to have content across their site and in newsletters that go to their job hunting database. This will allow us to have messaging at key moments when people are looking for work. Further partnerships are being worked on.
We are also investing in strong search engine marketing so people searching keywords will be linked to either thelowdown.co.nz or depression.org.nz.
Spread the word
Resources that include a guide to messaging, and the posts, videos and content mentioned above are available for national and community organisations to promote these important messages to their own communities.