Kiwi music industry charity MusicHelps have extended their services to the broader arts community, in response to industry-wide need for support due to the unprecedented impact that COVID-19 has had on the performing arts.
The MusicHelps Wellbeing Service is a FREE 24/7 online, on the phone (tollfree 0508MUSICHELP), and in-person counselling service. This service is being extended to the wider arts community with immediate effect, thanks to the kind generosity of MusicHelps along with NZ Comedy Trust, Auckland Live, and Auckland Theatre Company. People who work in the Arts Community, including comedians, actors, technicians, festival staff and crew, venue staff, and more people in the arts industry who have had their livelihoods affected, can now access the MusicHelps Wellbeing Service.
“Access to trained counsellors who understand the creative arts is so greatly needed in the wider arts community right now, so we are happy to open up our service which is already established and ready to help in this climate.” said Campbell Smith, Chairperson of MusicHelps.
The impact of the Coronavirus COVID-19 on the wider arts and music environment has been rapid and its effects widespread. In addition to the counselling services available, much of the information currently available on the MusicHelps website is also applicable to people in the arts community. MusicHelps recognises that safeguarding finances as well as physical, mental, and emotional health will be key to navigating the current situation successfully. Information regarding COVID-19 related cancellations, postponements, and other changes can be found in a specific section on the MusicHelps website, which includes resources about financial aid and touring advice: musichelps.org
More generally, trained counsellors at MusicHelps can talk callers through issues they are facing, and connect callers with face to face counselling and advice from their specialist local teams. All MusicHelps counsellors have a proven track record in the creative industries, and can provide access to other services for specific needs if necessary. MusicHelps provides information on some of the warning signs to look for in yourself and others, how to start the conversation with someone you’re worried about, information on mental health, links to online tools you might find useful, tips on how to maintain positive wellbeing and the numbers of other organisations that can help.