Support Groups

able provides various support groups, located throughout Otago, Southland, Central Otago and Waitaki. Support Groups give families and whānau the opportunity to make friends, share information, share stories, listen, have fun, and to be just you.

For more information on any of these groups, please get in touch

Children Understanding Mental Illness (CUMI)

It is well understood that mental illness affects more than just the sufferer. The family of a person with the mental illness may experience loss, grief, anger, frustration and much more in dealing with the illness of a family member.

Education and understanding of mental illness are key factors in the recovery process. The more help and support the family member can obtain from those around them, the easier the road to returning to health will be.

CUMI (Children Understanding Mental Illness) is a programme that addresses the needs of primary school age children who have a family/whanau member with a mental illness. This can be undertaken as a group exercise, or parts can be used with individuals using activity-based exercises to aid in the understanding of mental illness in a fun appropriate way.

A referral can be made through our website either through an online form or via a downloadable PDF or by phone on 032181831; one of our Field Workers will be allocated the CUMI recipients.

Families/Friends Understanding Disordered Eating

(Formally known as Easting Disorder Group)

Is focused on providing support and information to people with a loved one suffering from an eating disorder.  

Coming together to discuss experiences, share ideas and develop strategies for coping, the Families/Friends Understanding Disordered Eating Group offers a way to connect with those dealing with similar issues.



25 March 2021

Theme: First meeting of the year to discuss the year ahead 


Able Dunedin Office

5.30pm - 7.30pm


PH: 455 5973



(This group is not for the person suffering from the eating disorder, but their family/whanau.)

Education & Support meetings


13 May 2021




Able Dunedin Office

6.30pm - 8.30pm

able regularly organises speakers and discussion events on a range of mental health topics and issues for people who have a family member with mental illness.  These meetings also offer people a chance to share experiences and build support networks.



Weekly Peer Support Group

An informal group for people of all ages, the Weekly Peer Support offers friendship and conversation for those with a family member with mental illness. 

Depending on where the waling group is heading they either leave from the able Dunedin office or meet at the venue.

(Formally known as Weekly Walking Group)

Men's Peer Support Group

The Men’s Group is a down-to-earth forum for men of all ages who are on their own mental wellness journey.

Designed to provide support and information to men affected by mental distress or addiction, this is group for men to speak about their experiences, and find strength by connecting with other men facing the same kind of challenges.



12 April 2021

Theme: First meeting of the year to discuss the year ahead 


Able Dunedin Office

7.00pm - 9.00pm


PH: 455 5973

Te Anau Support Group

Do you care for or assist a family member who is suffering from mental illness? 

You are not alone.


Would you like to:

* connect with others in a similar situation in a warm, confidential environment?

* Find out more about where to seek advice and support?

* Talk about what you are going through in a judgement-free space?




Monday 15 March 2021


Fiordland Community House, Meeting Room

21 Luxmore Drive, Te Anau

12.00 pm

Seminars and Guest Speakers

These evenings offer an opportunity for families and those suffering from mental illness to find out what other people had experienced and the support they can receive.

Waves Programme - Gore

Waves is an 8-week programme that aims to support adults 18+ years old who have been bereaved by suicide.

The programme combines learning about suicide and bereavement with group discussion and support.  The group is facilitated by two trained facilitators and supports members to:

  • meet and share with others who are also experiencing the impact of suicide
  • provide a safe, supportive environment to explore aspects of their grief and reduce isolation and stigma associated with bereavement by suicide
  • gain information and strategies about how to care for themselves and others (including children and young people) after a suicide
  • adjust to living with loss and moving forward

Next scheduled programme to be held:


Starting Sunday 28 February 2021

Venue to be confirmed

To register contact Able Invercargill

Phone: 03 218 2100



Participants must commit to all 8 weeks of the programme


Collective Creators

A group of people with loved ones who have experienced mental distress and/or addictions and people who have experienced mental distress and/or addictions. Coming together to connect with others, share experiences, create, share and learn creative ideas. There will be speakers, learning the ukulele together, craft projects and kai.


Runs fortnightly beginning on Thursday 4 February 2021

1pm - 4pm at Community House (46 Kelvin Street)

For more information contact Able Invercargill 03 218 1832


Due to Covid 19 if you have been in contact with someone who has Covid, been travelling, are awaiting a Covid test result or are feeling unwell please stay at home. 

Alexandra Peer Support

Do you have a family/Whanau member who is affected by a mental illness or addiction?


Do you wish that you could go somewhere safe, for a cup of tea and a confidential chat with people who will listen?


Would you like to meet others experiencing similar situations?



would be happy to welcome you to their office,

located at 28 Ashworth Street, Alexandra

on a Wednesday afternoon

between 12pm and 2pm


Due to Covid 19 if you have been in contact with someone who has Covid, been travelling, are awaiting a Covid test result or are feeling unwell please stay at home.