Frequently Asked Questions

Answers to your questions

Questions & Answers

We tried to provide answers to most of your questions, Let us know if you have more questions in your mind, we will try to give an answer to your question

Can I become a volunteer for Grow? – I want to help people

We encourage volunteers to first join as an ordinary Grow member. By doing this you will have the opportunity to learn the Grow program, build trust and become known by others in the Grow community. As a volunteer, you can ask for help from your home group if you are experiencing a problem and share mental health challenges you have learnt to live with or overcome. It becomes greatly beneficial to you and others when you can relate a personal healing or growth experience and can say you have applied one or several passages found within The Grow Journey booklet. You will also be volunteering in a constructive way when you are asked to briefly share with the group a part of your personal mental health journey or story. Most volunteer leaders have begun this way, they have found where their talents lie and then developed their leadership skills from there.

As a volunteer, you can contribute by being supportive in an enabling way, guiding fellow members into achieving greater mental strength and emotional maturity. Click here to see what practical tasks you can offer.

Note that volunteer “student placements” are dependent on whether the group leader accepts the task and if the universities requirements can be met.

Where is Grow located in New Zealand?

Grow can be accessed by everyone in New Zealand, and Internationally. The NZ In-person groups are specifically located in Auckland, Hamilton, Rotorua, Kaiapoi north of Christchurch and Dunedin. Click here to locate your nearest group. Grow is not located in every city or town so if there is no Grow group conveniently close to your location, please consider accessing Grow via Zoom and the internet. You will need generous amounts of data from either Wifi or your phone plan.

What is the social side of Grow like?

Unlike the Grow weekly meetings, which are quite structured and purposeful in format, the Grow socials are much more free and relaxed to encourage and develop ongoing friendships to compliment the weekly meetings.

Some social events involve meeting together with members of your own group while other larger meetings are regularly organised with members of combined groups.

Is there a finite term of membership?

No. The membership term is open-ended and you are welcome to remain a lifetime member irrespective of your recovery – provided you are receiving comfort and aiding others. Long-term members who stay active in Grow are often referred to as ‘Seasoned Growers’.

Do all Grow groups operate the same?

Yes. All Grow support groups follow a recognisable and structured meeting agenda called the Group Method. A copy of the Group Method is found in the back pages of the Grow Journey book and its agenda helps to keep the meeting timely and on track. The meeting usually lasts about 1.5 – 2 hours and is overseen by a Grow approved Organiser. Another reason for having a meeting structure is so a relatively new member can soon learn to chair and lead a meeting. Leading a meeting will often fast track a member’s self-development – for gaining confidence, leadership skills and emotional maturity.

Is Grow Religious?

Grow does not align itself with any specific faith based religion or denomination. It accepts believers and non-believers alike. Grow’s primary objective is to help people with mental health problems. If that includes strengthening one’s faith, believing in God or any other spiritual power, then Grow is encouraging of that, especially if it improves one’s happiness and outlook on life.

How can I observe a meeting?

Anyone from the public is invited to attend and observe two or three meetings to see how Grow operates. This can be for the purpose of confidently referring someone to a Grow group or deciding whether to attend regularly yourself. Once you are satisfied Grow can help, you can become a member by attending meetings every week or as often as possible for your personal benefit. By regular attendance, you are not only receiving help for yourself, but you are benefiting others in the group by just being there and offering mutual help and peer support.

Note: If you are there to observe with no need of help for yourself, just let someone know you are attending as a “Community Observer”.

What are Grow meetings like?

Grow groups vary in size and average of 5 to 9 people. Meetings are held weekly, day or evening, lasting two hours and are followed by refreshments.

Grow meetings follow a recognisable format, which is same for all meetings. They combine personal testimonies, reports on progress, group work on members’ problems and adult education about rebuilding lives. Friendships are formed with the common goal to get well and stay well and it is ordinary between meetings to keep in touch through sociable phone calls or visits.

If I join Grow, will I need to buy any books?

There have been many books, topical readings, and testimonies written by members and seasoned leaders to Grow over the years, that are available to you. All are written to help you understand and come to terms with a variety of mental or emotional conditions – for prevention or improvement.

The one essential book you should consider buying as soon as possible is “The Grow Journey“ booklet, which is sometimes also known as the Blue Book. The cost is $8 + postage and is frequently referred to in a group.

You will initially be lent a Grow Journey Book to use while attending a group until you are ready to buy. This book contains condensed forms of Grow program learning’s, from which, most other Grow material is written concerning and expanding upon its content. Other books can be acquired over time as you progress in Grow and can be purchased over the website or from within the group.

How do I know if Grow is right for me?

We can confidentially say there is something for everyone in Grow. But only you can decide if you are ready to join. So, take a leap of faith and attend a Group to find out more. Some people will choose to attend one session, others will become a life time member. We encourage people to attend 3 consecutive meetings to see how Grow works best to your benefit.

I can’t get to an In-person group, should I try a Zoom group?

Grow recommends attending an In-person group for attaining the most benefit from Grow’s support network. However, we know that’s not always possible, which is why Grow Zoom groups were developed and can be attended from anywhere in the world via the internet.

Some examples of people who would benefit from a Zoom group are:

The In-person groups are not close geographically to where they live or work.
A stay at home mum with children to care for.
Employment or other activities conflict with In-person group times.
Having no car or access to convenient public transport.
Being disabled or other health reasons preventing access
Wanting to avoid peak hour travel in traffic
Feeling unsafe travelling at night
Cannot afford or want to reduce transport time or costs

Some instances where an In-person member may want to use a Zoom group temporarily are:

Away on holiday and want to keep in regular contact with a group
Sick or unwell and not wanting to spread germs or viruses.

Click here to find a Grow Group for both In-person and Zoom groups.

When is the right time for me to join Grow?

The right time is now. Don’t delay! – Your mental health is far too important and getting help early is vital. Most people come to Grow in a broken state but after a short period of growth it becomes hard to recognise the same person they once were upon joining and the change is more than they could have imagined. A Grow support group will first validate you, improve your confidence, and then help you learn to trust yourself and others. Join now

Can I do it alone – why do I need a Grow group?

Grow members know from experience that it can be too overwhelming to make changes or adjustments to your life habits on your own.

Instead, you will receive the friendly help of your group peers who have been where you have been, who have been shown how to apply the program to their own lives and are now wanting to show you how you can experience the same success.

It’s a journey where you are learning to take back a bit more control week by week and experience happiness again. Grow can help no matter how small or large you imagine your condition to be.

Who can be a Grower?

Anyone who is willing to help and be helped. Participation in Grow is strictly voluntary.No referrals or proof of medical history is necessary.

Grow is open to all human beings – irrespective to belief, race, colour or class.

Many members come to Grow with a history of hospitalisation but probably half come initially because they need help due to some life crises – a death in the family, divorce or a change in career.

What does Grow cost?

There is no fees or dues to attend a Grow group meeting. However, if you feel to give a donation towards the group’s expenses that would be appreciated but there is no obligation.

A donation box is made available within the group setting so that donations can be made anonymously. If you require a donation receipt please speak to the group Treasurer before donating. In return for donations, Grow invites you to receive ‘tax credits’ (for more info see our ‘Donate’ page).

How is Grow membership anonymous

In Grow we respect the privacy of individuals to ensure their safety and to gain the confidence of all members of the group. Whatever is shared in a group generally stays within the group – we ask that all members respect this rule. Members need only be known by their first name if they wish.

Who runs Grow?

Grow New Zealand belongs to an international mental health movement, which began in Australia. In NZ its National Office is run by seasoned Grow volunteers that form an Incorporated Society that is registered with the NZ Charities Commission.

The individual Grow groups are unincorporated societies, self-governing, operate their own bank accounts and apply for grants to cover administration and program expenses. They operate according to the National organisation’s program rules and objectives.

Grow is volunteer run. We do not employ counsellors or psychotherapists although we work in collaboration with all medical professions and often receive referrals from them.

Grow operates on a mutual help principle. This means you can receive help and instruction, and you can also offer comfort and counsel, balanced by compassion and understandings from Grow’s program and guidebook on healthy living.

Ready to Make a Change?

Join Grow, your contribution can make a difference in society
Contact us or join a Grow Group