Skills for life


Charitable Trust

Skills for Life

About Skills For Life

Services based on best practice achieving the right outcomes for each individual.

Based in Whangarei, Northland, New Zealand, Skills For Life Charitable Trust was founded in February 2017.  We’re proud to offer CBT based learning opportunities to committed and motivated individuals needing support with mental health issues.

Anyone can experience a mental health issue at any point in their life and need some help with understanding what they are experiencing and how to manage that experience. 


Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) is a short-term, goal orientated, evidence-based approach that takes a hands-on, practical method to problem solving.  Its goal is to change patterns of behaviour and thinking that are behind people's difficulties, and so change the way they feel. 


In addition to our courses for many differing needs, we instill confidence and resiliency in our students, giving them the power to tackle real world problems. Get in touch with us today to see how you can benefit from learning with us.



Courses Available

Learn With Us

When you decide to work with Skills for Life, you will be getting so much more out of your learning experience. Our facilitators are experienced mental health professionals and are passionate about bringing the best out of our students.  Check out some of the amazing opportunities we provide below.

Most of our courses comprise of 8 or 10 sessions, held weekly.  

Please talk to us regarding various funding options 

Runner & Shadow

Understanding and Managing Anxiety

eight  x 2 hour session course

This course provides an understanding of symptoms of anxiety and panic and their effects, as well as exploring treatments and self management options. We’ll define anxiety and panic and its impact on the mind and body. We’ll explore how lifestyles can affect anxiety, how to change anxious thinking cycles and how to relax more effectively.

Understanding and Managing Stress

eight  x 1 hour session course

This course provides an understanding of symptoms of stress and its effects. We’ll define stress and its impact on the mind and body.  You will identify your stress profile and consider stress management plans. We will explore unhelpful thinking and behaviours that create or maintain the experience of stress as well as other barriers to coping.  


Mind Fullness to Mindfulness

eight  x 1 1/2 hour session course

Being mindful means to bring your full attention to your present experience in an accepting, non-judgemental way.
In this course we’ll explore what mindfulness is, how to practise mindfulness quickly and easily so you can integrate a new way of being into your everyday life. This can help you to cope with your challenging emotions, managing stress, and increasing your general sense of wellbeing in a rich variety of different ways.


Understanding and Managing Depression

eight  x 2 hour session course

Depression is one of the most common mental health issues. In this course, we’ll discuss what it is and its wide ranging impact on all aspects of life. We’ll explore all kinds of skills including lifestyle strategies to improve mood and gain a sense of control with cognitive and behaviour techniques.

Rethink for Seniors

ten  x 2 hour session course

This course is designed for people of 65 years young and over. The course focuses on increasing resilience levels to enable a person to traverse the changes associated with the autumn years of life. 

We'll look at managing mental health as well as improving wellbeing and quality of life. We will cover a variety of topics that give us tools to help with managing our thoughts, developing more positive behaviours, coping with stress and worry, sleep and difficult emotions.

Black Dog Training

Black Dog Training

 eight x 1 hour session course for 14 - 17 year olds

This course is specifically for young people that experience depression. During this course we’ll look together at what it means to be depressed and how to cope with specific symptoms. Understanding what depression is and how it can affect our minds and behaviours is key to learning how to have better control on its effects. We will help you to identify and change your unhelpful thinking and behaviours which will help you to fight the lows.

Fighting 'IT'

Fighting 'IT'

eight x 1 hour session course for 14 - 17 year olds

This course is specifically for young people that experience anxiety. During this course we’ll look together at what anxiety is and how it affects us; how it feels, what we are thinking and what we do. We will explore all the different situations that bring anxious feelings and the possible reasons for that. We will learn different ways to feel relaxed-the opposite to feeling anxious. Helping us to understand all about anxiety teaches us how to be the boss of ‘it’!

Working It Out

designed for individuals claiming an unemployment or medical benefit via work and income 

This course is specifically for people that are unemployed due to wellbeing issues.  We explore how to deal with destructive negative thinking and behaviours and look at understanding different emotions and how to manage these.  The course also explores our relationships with self, others and the world. There are specific sessions that cover assertiveness, dealing with conflict and criticism and problem solving.   


This course is offered in venues in Whangarei, Dargaville, Kerikeri, Kaikohe and Kaitaia 


Facilitated by Skills for Life and is fully funded by Work and Income.  The course is 6 weeks long  and currently the sessions run on two mornings each week, in each area, from 9.30am -12.30pm 


Please be aware that there is no employment obligation following the course as everyone is to work at their own pace with regards to employment readiness but it is designed to help a person learn to manage their mental health and move on in life in whatever way that is for the individual.

Course Design 

Skills for Life offer a course and workshop design service. This service will enable any business, workplace or educational facility to provide wellbeing training in order to target any specific identified needs

For more information on services offered at Skills For Life, contact us.

Skills for life


We’d be happy to provide you with additional information about individual courses and facilitators at Skills For Life.

Go to our facebook page, text or send us a message.

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Suite 303, 33-35 Robert Street, Whangarei 0110



09 988 9938 / 021 791 141


09 988 9938

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Skills for life

Opening Hours

Locations and hours vary depending on course

Mon - Fri: 8.30am - 7pm
Saturday: Closed
Sunday: Closed