Sir John Kirwan is heading to Christchurch to share his personal story around depression, hope, and mental wellness.
Registrations to attend this free session with JK at the Charles Luney Auditorium, St Margaret's College (12 Winchester Street, Merivale, Christchurch) on 11 June are now open.
If you would like to attend, please register here.
The Westpac Ambassador will open up about his own experiences, and focus on resilience and courage.
Speaking from experience
Publicly outing himself as prone to depression, JK says he’s looking forward to meeting some of the locals.
“I just tell my story. Why would I be depressed? I had the perfect world. I was an All Black living a great life.
And often that’s the first question you’d say to yourself, you know.
“There are a couple of things that are really important for me. Firstly, depression, it’s an illness, not a weakness.
JK's goal: no more suicides in New Zealand
With youth in New Zealand and the rural sector having the highest suicide rates, JK says it's not something we can ignore.
"It’s something I want to tackle head on and openly talk about because you can get through it and there’s a lot of hope out there if you reach out and look for it.”
He says one of the most important things is continuing to talk about the issues.
“I don’t pretend to know what people are going through or what’s pushed them to be unwell, but what I do know is I’ve been there and done that, and a lot of the symptoms are the same and a lot of the recovery you can do is the same.”
JK says the idea with the session is to have an honest and open conversation.
With limited seats available, those keen to head along need to register here.