Taha whānau – family, community and social wellbeing

He aha te mea nui o te ao? He tangata, he tangata, he tangata

What is the most important thing in the world? It is man, it is woman, it is people

Having strong, healthy connections with others is one of the best ways to maintain our wellbeing.

Connect with others

Staying connected to whānau and the world around us is essential for our wellbeing, sense of belonging and identity. Whānau isn’t limited to our immediate family members. It can be our friends, colleagues, community, hapū, hapori and the people we care about.

By sharing experiences and connecting with whānau we can discover how to help others. We can also get the support we may need to navigate and overcome the challenges life and study can throw at us.

(Source Mental Health Foundation

For more information about ways to get connected;

Connect, me whakawhanaunga  


Your study community

Studying by distance can feel isolating at times, but it’s important to remember you’re not alone. If things start to feel hard or stressful, reach out to your whānau and community. They can help keep you accountable, empowered and supported.

You can get involved with others who are studying alongside you by:

  • Talking to your peers and sharing perspectives. This is a great way to learn and creates a community that can support you and empathise with the challenges of studying.
  • Using the Talk channels in iQualify to chat about ideas, ask questions and check-in on one another.
  • Looking out for each other in the lead-up to deadlines. 

How we can help

When you study with us you will always have the support of your Course Leader. They are there to help with any questions you might have about the course content or if you’re stuck on how to get started. Kaua e whakamā – never feel embarrassed or worried about reaching out to them for help. It’s what they’re there for! They want to see you succeed in your studies and should be an important part of your study journey.

Our Student Mentors will also be with you every step of the way to mentor and assist you with your support needs and how to manage your study time.

If you need help to figure out what's next in your study journey contact our Student Advisors. They are here to help with planning your studies.

Counselling support

If you are having a tough time or feeling vulnerable and don’t have anyone to turn to for help or āwhina (support), we’ve partnered with Puāwaitanga to offer free and confidential phone and online counselling services.

They can help if you have mild to moderate symptoms of stress, depression, anxiety, grief and loss, relationship issues, low self-esteem, addictions or other related issues that may be affecting your life.


Getting involved in your wider community

It's important for everyone to have a sense of community or haporitanga. Getting involved with our local community can make us feel as though we are a part of something greater than ourselves. It also gives us opportunities to connect with others.


Giving to a cause or helping others through volunteering can bring fun and fulfilment to our lives. It not only benefits the people we support, it can also help improve our self-esteem and increase social connections.

You could volunteer in something that relates to a particular interest or passion of yours. Or it could relate to your study, so you can get some practical experience alongside what you’re learning.

Volunteering New Zealand is a good place to get started finding opportunities to volunteer in your local area.

Joining local sports groups

Team sports and clubs are a fun and easy way to meet new people with similar interests and form connections that may last a lifetime.

Community groups and events

Looking for something new to do or wanting to join a new online community? A great way to keep in touch with locals in your area is by joining Neighbourly or Eventfinda. These are great sites to keep an eye on local events and opportunities to connect in your community.

How to help others

In the same way that we need help from others sometimes, we can also offer support to our friends and whānau when we can.

Do you have a family member who seems withdrawn or out of sorts? Or a friend who’s not been themselves lately? If you’re close to them, you will know when something isn’t quite right, so check in with them by asking if they are okay. Let them know you are there for them if they need you.

For ideas on how to connect with and support someone who may be going through a difficult time check the Mental Health Foundation:

Need urgent mental health support?

If one of your friends or whānau need urgent mental health support contact one of the free helplines listed on our support page:

If it is an emergency or you're concerned for safety dial 111 immediately.