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Postnatal Depression
Family/Whanau New Zealand Trust


The Postnatal Depression Family/Whanau New Zealand Trust was set up as a Charitable Trust in 2006 to improve awareness and understanding of postnatal depression (PND) and related mental illnesses in pregnancy and after childbirth. Members of the Trust include women who have experienced PND, family members, health professionals, and other interested people. Our hope is that women in the community and their families/whanau will feel less isolated and be more able to access help by using this information.

Aims of Mothers Matter

  • Provide information for mothers, fathers & families on PND & related conditions, such as anxiety & bipolar disorder.
  • Contain local supports available in NZ.
  • Relates to the cultural diversity in NZ.
  • Has NZ based information and treatments.
  • Has information for medical professionals in NZ to help keep up with new developments.

About the website

The Trust has set up this website to provide up to date information for these mothers, fathers and their families/whanau and for those health professionals who are treating them.

This website is unique in that it is New Zealand based and relates to our New Zealand culture with kiwi mums, dads and family/whanau members talking about their personal experiences living with postnatal depression and anxiety.

The site provides relevant information regarding health and support systems in New Zealand. Unfortunately accessibility to perinatal or maternal mental health services is not consistent across the country. For instance, if you live in the North island, there are no designated psychiatric ‘mother and baby’ beds therefore it is unlikely that a baby will be able to be admitted when their mother is unwell (some smaller hospitals may allow this).

The only specialised perinatal psychiatric inpatient unit is in Christchurch and the Trust is grateful to that service for the support they have provided in setting up this site. One of the reasons for the greater number of support systems listed for Canterbury is the fact that this is where both the Trust and The Mothers and Babies Service are located. We welcome input from other regions.

This site provides more in depth information on the medications that are available in New Zealand than other sites.

Trust members have used their own professional and personal knowledge and that of other health professionals, contacts, and friends to contribute to this site. The information from this site is not designed to take the place of a personal consultation with a medical professional.


This is an ongoing site. There are areas we plan to update further:

  • There are a number of other medications we plan to include.
  • We need more information on cultural diversity.
  • We need more information on regional support services.
  • We plan to keep the site up-to-date with new treatments and information.
  • Add more stories.
  • Add more Q&A.

If you can help us please let us know through our Feedback section.


Purposes of the PND Family/Whanau Trust


  • To raise awareness and improve identification of women and their whanau who are suffering from depression, anxiety, adjustment difficulties and psychotic disorders during pregnancy and in the first years after childbirth.
  • To provide support and assistance to those women and their whanau.
  • To foster and encourage the development of support networks for the benefit of those women and their whanau.
  • To support preventative initiatives aimed at reducing the risk of women becoming mentally unwell during pregnancy or in the first years after child birth.
  • To support development and provision of education to New Zealanders regarding prenatal adjustment, perinatal psychiatric disorders and the needs of parents with a psychiatric illness who have one or more preschool children.
  • To support development and provision of education to New Zealanders regarding infant mental health and the needs of pre-school children who have a parent with a psychiatric illness.
  • To support research into psychiatric disorders occurring during pregnancy or affecting parents with one or more pre-school children.
  • To lobby government to improve psychiatric services for parents and their families who are affected by psychiatric disorders and who have one or more pre-school children.

Current Trustees

Kathy Cranston (Chair)

Devon Watson (Secretary)

Gordon Hansen (Treasurer)

Debbie Wilson (website editor)

Erin Greirson (Trustee)

Maud Martin (Trustee)

Amy Callaghan (Trustee)

The PND Trust thanks you for your support and interest. We would be grateful for any feedback. Thank you.



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