Here to help: The Central Lakes Family Services respite team, includ ing clinical manager Fiona Young, far left

A crisis respite facility for people struggling with their mental health has opened in Queenstown.

Health NZ Te Whatu Ora Central Lakes’ facility, provided by Central Lakes Family Services (CLFS), was first announced in June, 2022, as part of a new model of care for mental health and addiction crisis support, which keeps care local.

It also includes outreach support to sit alongside the 24/7 regional crisis response service, launched last year.

The new facility, with clinically-trained staff providing 24-hour residential support, offers a quiet, peaceful environment where people can relax, stabilise and reset.

People can stay there for up to three days, after which they’ll receive home-based support.

The service follows a localised Central Lakes model of care developed by stakeholders using Te Whare Tapa Whā as the guiding pillars.

It includes wellbeing plans which are discussed and put into place, factoring in sleep, exercise, nutrition and self-care, while staff also advocate for people to connect with other services, such as budgeting, housing and immigration.

CLFS general manager Tina Mongston says it’s great to have the service fully up and running.

‘‘We’re seeing mental health presentations in every aspect of all the services we offer and having the expertise available to tap into within our team really benefits the community.’’

For those needing crisis support, the service can either be accessed through a Te Whatu Ora Southern specialist mental health and addiction team referral, available to call 24/7 — 0800 467 846 and press 1 for Southland (Queenstown) or 2 for Otago — or via a GP referral.

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