Get Help - Mates in Construction NZ | Mental health in Construction
Need help now? Call 0800 111 315

Need help now?

Please call the MATES in Construction 24/7 Helpline 0800 111 315 

In an emergency please dial 111 if you think you or someone else is at risk of harm


Escort the person to the nearest hospital emergency department, or

Phone your local DHB Mental Health Crisis team, or visit

Free phone or text 1737 to communicate immediately with a counsellor

We’re here to help 24 hours a day.

Our service is completely free.

Are you feeling anxious or just need someone to talk to? 

Are you feeling down or a bit overwhelmed? 

Do you know someone who is feeling out-of-sorts or depressed? Let them know they can call us.

Whatever it is, we’re here. 

Free Call 0800 111 315 

MATES in Construction NZ | Mental health in Construction


If you are on a construction site which has received MATES in Construction training, please contact a “CONNECTOR” (Green badge on hard hat) or “ASIST” worker (Blue badge). They have been trained to help and to keep workers safe from self-harm while connecting them to help.

CONNECTORS and ASIST workers have been trained by MATES in Construction and are able to provide necessary help on site.

They are volunteers and receive no reward for their efforts, except the safety and wellbeing of their fellow workers.

MATES in Construction | MATES Connector
MATES in Construction NZ | MATES Asist

Worried about someone you know?

How do you have a conversation about mental health?  Read our guide below – or download a pocket-sized copy here.

MATES in Construction NZ | How to have a conversation about mental health

How to have a conversation about mental health

If you think a team member is struggling with their mental health, don’t ignore it. Be aware that talking about personal struggles can be difficult and they might get emotional, embarrassed or upset.

So…. think about the right place and the right time.

Maybe at a park, over a coffee, offsite; somewhere quiet and private.

When a conversation may be needed

Have you noticed more fear, anxiety, anger, irritability, sadness and emptiness? Are they withdrawn, quiet, mood swings?

Have you noticed less involvement or enjoyment?

Has the person’s behaviour or thinking changed?

Concentration, distraction, memory, communication – sentences with hesitation, silences or no ending?

Is the person distant, overprotective, jumpy, denying or avoiding, taking risks, hungover or impaired, doing things like speeding or taking risks on site?

Sometimes it’s just a gut feeling. 

Trust your gut!

No special skills are needed to have a conversation about mental health

You just need to be…

Empathetic – try and put yourself in their shoes.

Approachable – don’t judge and don’t try and have all the answers.

Willing to listen – give them your full attention.

And let them know it’s confidential!

How to start the conversation

You don’t have to have all the answers – just being there and being supportive is great!

Start with…

“How are you doing?”

“What’s happening in your world?”

“How’s life?”  “How’s the family?”

If they’re okay talking, then mention specific things that have made you concerned, such as

“you don’t seem yourself – anything up?”

How can you support them?

Let them know you are asking because you are concerned about them. If they get upset or angry, stay calm, don’t take it personally.

Ask questions about what is going on like:

“Have you spoken to anyone else about this?”

“What would help you manage the load?”

“What can we change to make life easier?”

Don’t interrupt or rush, sit patiently in silence while they think. Take it seriously.

What next?

Think about what other support they may need such as the Employee Assistance Programme, their GP, family, whanau, friends, community and church leaders and help them to contact them. Avoid assuming what they may need. Ask them things like:

“How can I help?”

“What would be a good first step?”

“What has helped before?”

Follow up in a couple of days.


There are number of resources we have available to assist if you or someone you know is struggling with depression, anxiety or suicidal thoughts. See our Pocket Guide above.

We also have several resources to assist you if you are struggling with grief after the loss of a friend of family member due to suicide or death through other causes.

MATES in Construction NZ | Mental Health in Construction

when someone dies suddenly

Dealing with a sudden death can be very hard. This booklet will give you a general idea of what you can expect to happen when a death is referred to a coroner.

after suicide

Supporting yourself in the days and weeks following a death by suicide.

coping with grief and loss

This leaflet provides information about grief and loss. It suggests ways to cope or to help others to cope.

5 ways to wellbeing

Use these information sheets to help your people understand each of the Five Ways, including why they are good for mental health and what you can do to build them into your day

there is a way through

A guide for people experiencing stress, depression and anxiety.

    Alternative support lines


Tautoko Suicide Crisis Helpline 

0508 828 625


0800 726 666


0800 543 354
text 4357



Police, Ambulance, Fire Brigade


Emergency Services for the hearing impaired – TTY


    24 hour services


Shine – 9am-11pm 7 Days
(family violence)

0508 744 633


0800 543 345

Local Health Service

0508 558 855

NZ Poison Centre

0800 764 766

Rape Crisis

0800 883 300

Depression Help Line

0800 111 757

National Help Line



0800 453 771

Veterans Affairs NZ

0800 483 8372

    National helplines


Alcohol & Drug Helpline

0800 787 797

Wellplace NZ

04 917 0060

HELP (Auckland)

09 623 1700

CADS (Alcohol & Drug Service)

09 845 1818

ManAlive – Main Office

0800 826 369

Women’s Refuge Crisis Line

0800 733 843

Problem Gambling Help Line

Free text

0800 654 655



0800 611 116

Family & Community Services

0800 211 211

Outline (LGBTIQ+ Support)

0800 688 5463

Auckland City Mission (Homelessness)

09 303 9200