North Canterbury Rural Support Trust

North Canterbury Rural Support Trust

North Canterbury Rural Support Trust helps locals in tough times

The North Canterbury Rural Support Trust is part of a nationwide network supporting farmers and their families through tough times.

The Trust has access to networks, services and government funding and can help people navigate their financial and personal challenges, or assist during climatic adverse events like drought, flood, or heavy snow.

Free and confidential assistance is available through the Trust’s Facilitators who, like you, are rural people who have themselves faced the challenges rural life brings.  Contact is one-on-one at a place that suits you. 

The North Canterbury Rural Support Trust is a charitable trust that encompasses the five District councils of Kaikoura, Hurunui, Waimakariri, Selwyn and Christchurch, including Banks Peninsula. We also support farmers on the Chatham islands.

Email Us

Call North Canterbury Rural Support Trust on 0800 787 254

Calling from a cell phone? Select Option #3, #4, #1

Calling from a landline? You will immediately be directed to the Duty Coordinator

Our People

Please double click on each photo for more details



Noel McGirr (Chair), Hugh Eaton (Vice Chair), Dorothy Stewart, Gayle Litchfield, Richard Friedman, Tim Cookson, Leo Fietje, Stu Wright, Tony Chaston


Doug Archbold, Grant McFadden

Facilitators and Area Reps


Jodie Denton, Sonseeahray Laugesen, Tony Blunt


Ben Chaffey, Elspeth Loughnan, Lyn Crean, Mandy Burrows, Noel McGirr, Suz Mowat


Dorothy Stewart, Geoff Spark, Simon Robinson


Barbara McLeod, Bruce Rolls, Don Hayes, Gayle Litchfield, Jo Fearn, Lynda Clark, Sue Cumberworth, Sue Lalich, Richard Friedman, Stu Wright,Sinead Wilding,Tim Cookson

Christchurch and Banks Peninsula:

Doug Archbold, Grant McFadden, Hugh Eaton, Leo Fietje, Pam Richardson, Tony Chaston, Trevor McIntyre

Rural Champions - Nominations now open!

Rural Champions - Nominations now open!

Last year, the Otago Daily Times and Rural Life celebrated Year of the Farmer, a hugely successful initiative championing the work and community contributions of our farmers and growers. It culminated in the naming of Duntroon dairy farmer Myfanwy Alexander as our inaugural Rural Champion.
April 2, 2024 0 Comments
Government announces drought support for Canterbury and Otago

Government announces drought support for Canterbury and Otago

The Coalition Government is expanding the medium-scale adverse event classification in place for the Marlborough, Nelson, and Tasman districts to cover the Canterbury and Otago regions, Agriculture Minister Todd McClay announced today.

March 25, 2024 0 Comments
South Island Agricultural Field Days, Kirwee, Canterbury

South Island Agricultural Field Days, Kirwee, Canterbury

This is one of the oldest and largest agricultural events in the South Island; going back 70 years, it focuses on opportunities to view machines in their working state and reinforcing the relationship between farmers, service providers, scientists and technical experts.

3/26/2025 8:30 AM - 3/28/2025 4:00 PM 0 Comments
SIDE - South Island Dairy Event, Lincoln, Canterbury

SIDE - South Island Dairy Event, Lincoln, Canterbury

The South Island Dairy Event (SIDE) is a two day conference for farmers, led by farmers Established in 1998, we provide a forum for those involved in the South Island dairy industry to evaluate and apply knowledge, skills and technology to their business.  SIDE has grown to become New Zealand’s premier dairy conference and the largest event of its type in...
6/25/2024 - 6/26/2024 0 Comments

Upcoming Local Events

Help and resources available to you...


North Canterbury Rural Support Trust Brochure (PDF)

Farmstrong: Live Well, Farm Well

Rural Assistance Payments - Work and Income

 Next Steps  A directory/hub covering all services available in the Waimakariri and the Hurunui.

Call 1737  

Resources - documents to support wellbeing

Mental Health Foundation - free resources (download) how to talk to youth about suicide 

3 Most Important Words - Adam Piandes is 39, living on his parents couch "Breakdowns can create breakthroughs"

Comcare  Assists mental health and addiction issues to live well in the Canterbury community. 

Rangatahi Well Guidance for supporting the wellbeing of young people

Yellow Brick Road Formerly Supporting Families. A national organisation that provides support for whanau who are experiencing mental health.

Waves   Mental Health suicide bereavement support and information.

Aoake te Ra  Free, brief theraputic support service for those bereaved by suicide.

Step Ahead   Step Ahead is a not-for-profit organisation that helps those experiencing mental illness by providing community-based activities and services.

Getting Through Together Encourages people to  look after themselves and one another.

The Wise Group To create fresh possibilities and services for the well being of people, organisations and communities

Inclusive Aoteraroa Promoting health and awareness to feel like you belong.

Ministry of Health Getting through loss  and grief together in Covid 19

Communicating for Diversity Resources Managing cultural communication

Mentemia Led by Sir John Kirwan, get a boost to your mental well being.

Asian Family Services

Mental health - living rurally 

Suicide Crisis Helpline

7 tips for a good nights sleep

Anger within Depression and Practise of Self Compassion

Abusive Workplace - Its not okay to be yelled at or abused

A test for both depression and anxiety - John Kirwan's depression website. 

How Dogs can Help with Mental Health

Practical Financial Skills to Managing Money

Practical Tips following Suicide of loved one - practical support from Ministry of Youth 

Sleeping Well in the Digital Age - This resource highlights the correlation between light and the brain and how it negatively impacts sleep pattern

John Kirwan-Rural Videos-Small Steps

Selwyn Community Care Trust  We aim to help peoplein the wider community with driving to appointments and home visiting. Volunteer gardening for those finding garden difficult.

Spring with Sarah  Sarah helps people navigate grief, anxiety, depression and lifes ongoing challenges. Sarah is an international author and speaker.






0800 4 324 7969

Beef + Lamb NZ
0800 733 466

0508 467 869

NZ Young Farmers
0800 699 346

Federated Farmers
0800 327 646

Dairy Women's Network
0800 396 748

0800 482 463


0800 543 354 or 09 522 2999 or Free text 4357 (HELP)

0800 376 633

0800 726 666

Alcohol Drug Helpline
0800 787 797

Gambling Helpline
0800 654 655

Rural Women New Zealand
0800 256 467

Rural Employee Scheme
0800 694 121

Rural Support Trust NZ


We are a voluntary Charitable Trust and welcome your donation to help us continue
supporting our rural families.

You can donate via bank transfer to 03 0830 0259556 002 using your name as reference.

Please email to enable us to acknowledge your donation and send a tax receipt.

Thank you for your kindness.

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With thanks to our Principal Sponsors
Thanks to our Time Out Tour partners