Returning November 3rd 2023

Having depression is like walking through mud every day. So, during our national campaigns, we ask you to show your support, put your gumboots on, give a gold coin, and take a walk in their shoes for just one day.

Our next Gumboot Friday is scheduled for November 3rd 2023.

Join us as we raise funds for free kids counselling

All year round incredible people around the country are fundraising and getting involved in Gumboot Friday. What's on in your community? Check out the map.

Get your community involved

With the generosity and support of New Zealanders we will continue to supply private care and counselling for young people in distress.

Gumboot Friday sign at a shop
Group of schoolgirls with gumboots
Gumboots with a donation card
Group of kids with gumboots

Frequently asked questions

When is the next Gumboot Friday?

The next Gumboot Friday is scheduled for November 3rd 2023.

What is Gumboot Friday?

Gumboot Friday is an initiative by the I Am Hope Foundation, a fundraising and advocacy organisation that supports young people who are struggling with their mental health. We help connect young people with existing counsellors or therapists and provide funding for counselling, so that they get help as soon as they need it.

The Gumboot Friday counselling funding service is designed to take the pressure off current services and give young people facing long wait times an alternative pathway.

Gumboot Friday is not a long-term solution designed to take over from government services, rather, it should be seen as a bridge between current services and immediate need. Everyone is encouraged to seek government funded help while utilising our service.

Why gumboots?

For people struggling with depression, it can feel like walking through mud every day.

So on nominated Friday's during the year, we're asking you to show your support, put your gumboots on, give a gold coin, and take a walk in their shoes for just one day.

​It's a fun way for kiwis to join in the mental health conversation, while raising money to provide free and timely counselling for any young person in need.

How can I get involved?

Different ways you can get involved:

  • Wear your gumboots on Gumboot Friday and show your support for those suffering from depression.
  • Make a gold coin donation.
  • Involve your workplace, school or organisation. Join the Gumboot Army here.
  • Purchase one of our branded t-shirts or merchandise here. When you wear it, remember to be open to having vulnerable conversations and talking to friends and family.
What if I don't have any gumboots?

You can still take part in any of the ways mentioned above. Or share a pair with a friend - a problem shared is a problem halved!

How do I register my event?

To let us know about your fundraising plans, join the Gumboot Army here. Thank you again for your support, let's #GUMBOOTUPNZ!

How do I donate?

There are multiple ways to donate to Gumboot Friday. See the options on our Make a Donation page.

Where can I get a t-shirt?

Check out our online shop here.

All profits from the sale of Gumboot Up products will go into the Gumboot Friday Kiwibank account to help kids access free counselling when they need it.

What is the money used for?

100% of your donation that's deposited directly into the Kiwibank Gumboot Friday account goes to counselling for kiwi kids and young people. Kids (with the support of their adult supporters) can make an appointment directly with a counsellor or therapist that meets our criteria.

Who can access Gumboot Friday funding?

Anyone in New Zealand who is 25 years of age or under.

What sort of counselling services do you offer?

We provide funding for young people aged 05-24 yrs to get counselling.
Counsellors are not employed by the I Am Hope Foundation. We're collecting a database of counsellors qualified to work with young people, so we can share their details on our website (counsellors can sign up here). Young people can get a counsellor from our database to make an appointment.

We have strict guidelines about the types of counsellors and therapists we accept onto our database.
They must all fit one of the following categories:

  • NZAC – New Zealand Association of Counsellors  Te Roopu Kaiwhiriwhiri o Aotearoa.
  • NZCCA – New Zealand Christian Counsellors Association.
  • NZPB – New Zealand Psychologists Board, Te Poari Kaimātai Hinengaro o Aotearoa.
  • PBANZ – The Psychotherapists Board of Aotearoa New Zealand Te Poari o nga Kaihaumanu Hinengaro o Aotearoa.
  • SWRB – Social Workers Registration Board Kāhui Whakamana Tauwhiro.

Counsellors and Therapists on our database are not a recommendation or exhaustive list of available professionals in New Zealand. We encourage everyone to do the necessary research to find a practitioner who suits your personal needs.

We expect all counsellors and therapists on our database to provide I AM HOPE and Gumboot Friday clients with the same quality of service and professionalism as clients who pay directly.

What gap is Gumboot Friday is filling in society?

It is not uncommon for suicidal youth to be discharged from the public system as “not acute enough” or to find themselves on a waitlist for the better half of a year. These claims are backed by interviews and subsequent thematic analysis with our counsellors. New Zealand’s system forces children to get worse before they get better and systematically pushes our mental health practitioners to burnout. 

Gumboot Friday flips the script by offering counselling as “just a conversation”. In our system, children receive free, timely help unconditionally, regardless of who they are. This allows us to address issues quickly before they escalate, and thus unburdens the health system while giving our children support when they request it. On the other side of this service, practitioners can access funding to hold children in their community and enjoy a higher quality of work with a less acute clientele, as well as a fair wage. 

“When we found our counsellor I was surprised, amazed and so very very thankful to hear that my daughter’s first session would be free thanks to Gumboot Friday, and that should she require it, the counsellor was able to apply for up to another 2-4 sessions, also paid for by Gumboot Friday for my daughter.  Thankfully my daughter responded well to the counselling and being a single parent there was a great sense of relief knowing that any financial constraints I may have had were not going to be a barrier to her getting the support she needed.With that said, ‘affordability’ was never even questioned when I first spoke with the Counsellor, and I am still in awe that anyone in New Zealand under the age of 25 has the opportunity to receive free counselling thanks to Mike and your team.”
Counselling Client
“Counseling was not there when we needed it.  It’s very expensive for some of us and was not going to be funded through ACC for us.We needed to pay ourselves. We paid for some sessions and then her counsellor said she was able to get funding for 2x sessions through I Am Hope. We were delighted!  This was in December 2021. It made such a difference to us and our Christmas. More importantly though, it gave our girl a boost to know someone else cared about her enough to do that.  It gave her enough of a boost to start fighting for better days. So, thank you, it means so much more than you would realise.”
Gumboot Friday Registered Counsellor
“Mike and Gumboot Friday literally saved my life if it wasn’t for those free sessions I would have never found out what was truly wrong with me and how to fix it. After my suicide attempt I went down hill real fast and had no way out until Gumboot Friday helped me. Me and my family thank you Mike more then you could imagine”
Counselling Client
“Hi there, I just wanted to let you know my daughter has made contact with one of the councillors on your list & had her first session with her tonight, despite only being the first visit she feels like someone actually understands what's going on with her head & is back next week for another session.   I just wanted to say thank you for taking the time to reply to my message especially since she didn't fit into you age bracket that you are aiming to help & of almost desperation. I've long been a Gumboots supporter & we have already lost 1 son to suicide so didn't want to lose a daughter as well. thank you from the bottom of my heart.💕”
Counselling Client
“Tearing up with joy. Well done New Zealand. And thank you Mike, Jo, and the rest of Gumboot Friday team for helping myself directly and so many others on their journey.
Your support, quick response, and words of encouragement has already made such a massive difference to me, and I can’t wait to speak with one of your team very soon! It’s truly life saving.
Thank you again. Much aroha you troopers 🙂💙”
Counselling Client
“Through Gumboot Friday both my sister and I were able to access additional counselling sessions as we had used up our funded free sessions prior. This was a big help for me as I was on the waiting list for a psychiatrist and I know it was helpful for my little sister to talk to someone who could help her wrap her head around what had happened.
So thank you for Gumboot Friday, it’s helped so many people in New Zealand and my sister and I are just 2 people that have been helped. ”
Counselling Client