Auckland - Tuesday, 10 October 2023

Over 600 New Zealanders take their lives every year, with countless more experiencing suicidal ideas or acting on these thoughts in the form of non-fatal suicide attempts.

Interestingly, studies have shown that around 60% of those who die by suicide, speak to a helping professional in the weeks prior to their death. All human services professionals need a framework for assessing and intervening with suicidal clients, to ensure that these opportunities for intervention are utilized for the maximum benefit of their at-risk clients.

Workshop Aims

Following the phenomenal success of his previous face-face workshops with over 900 participants attending across NZ, John is back to present this one-day workshop in Auckland on Preventing Suicide Using the Solution Focused approach. This workshop is intended specifically, to reduce further the suicide rate amongst clients/service users (SUs) and to act as a refresher workshop for the basic tools and techniques of the SFBT model. Attendees will be provided with a unique approach to the SU who is having suicidal ideas, which both reduces the likelihood of further suicidal thinking and, at the same time, reduces the sense of burden on the health professional. A range of specialised SF tools and techniques are taught and practiced at this workshop. These can be implemented immediately into participants’ daily practice.

One Day Workshop – Auckland

This training will focus on the practical side of preventing suicide using this approach. There will be some powerful solution-focused techniques demonstrated, followed by interactive practice exercises by participants.

John will cover:

  • How we can tell whether someone is suicidal, rather than simply depressed.

  • Empathy and Deep empathy.

  • The 3 core conditions for effective communication and rapid rapport building.

  • Questions to elicit suicidal ideation.

  • Sample questions to ask once suicidal ideation has been established.

  • Effective Solution Focused techniques in suicide prevention.

  • 10 key points to cover in the first session.

  • Generating other possibilities, alongside the suicide option, as potential solutions to difficulties.

  • ‘Going with’ the suicidal person.

  • Being as effective as possible.

  • Graveside Scenario.

  • Ending a session positively, constructively and assertively.

He will demonstrate practical examples of the above; and, in addition, cover suicide in the context of unresolved or undeclared trauma.

Intended Learning Outcomes

At the end of the workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Apply at least 10 of the basic SFBT tools and techniques to their work with the suicidal

  • Acknowledge their existing knowledge and skill base when working with suicidal SUs and be keen to enhance that effectiveness.

  • Have a good grasp of the basic concepts of the SF approach to the SU who expressed suicidal ideas.

  • Be confident enough to apply to good effect, at least 2 of the specialised SF techniques, in their work with the suicidal SU

  • Feel more comfortable in their dealings generally with SUs who want to talk about suicide or self-harm as an option for dealing with their difficulties

  • Know when, from a risk assessment perspective, to discuss the case and/or receive supervision from appropriate professional colleagues and/or managers

  • Appreciate the value and importance of hope and optimism within themselves, even when dealing with the most tragic of human circumstances confronting them.

Who Should Attend

Anyone supporting or working with suicidal persons.
This includes, but is not limited to: Front-line staff working in social services, health, education and law enforcement: Key Workers, Unit Managers, Mental Health Nurses, Social Workers, Psychologists, Psychiatrists RTLB, Teachers, General Practitioners, Therapists, Emergency Room staff, Telephone Helpline staff, Residential Care Workers, Marriage and Family Therapists, Licensed Practicing Counselors, Police and Probation Officers.

Also, volunteers, and those who have the lived-experience of supporting colleagues, friends, or whanau who are suicidal, and anyone who wants to learn simple yet effective tools to help those at risk.

NOTE - If your organisation is interested in having John present a private face-face to members of your team, please contact Faye Johnson for more information.

What others have said about this workshop

"John is a fantastic presenter. Very knowledgeable and expert in his field yet very humble an down to earth. Can we clone him to set up a suicide prevention agency in New Zealand please."

"Best suicide training I have been to. It was great to start at identified risk and then go onto the 'next steps', as most courses I have attended have finished and I've been left thinking how do I put this into action? THANK YOU."

"John was absolutely fantastic. I have attended every suicide workshop I could over the past few years, and this one was by far the most beneficial, useful, and practically applicable."

"This would be one of the best workshops that I have attended - hugely informative"

The following peak bodies and organisations recognise that the training we offer is of a high quality, evidence based and relevant for their members CPD.

About The Presenter

JOHN HENDEN is an international trainer, author, therapist, and performance coach. For over 20 years, he worked within UK NHS mental health services firstly as a practitioner, then as a manager, during a time of rapid change. He delivers a wide range of training courses; and also provides organisations with personal coaching and mentoring services.

In addition to working with GROW (NZ), his client list includes UK NHS and SSAFA Trusts, Compass Ltd (NZ), CRUSE, HM Forces, Helsinki Psychotherapy Institute, Korzybski Institute (Belgium) Local Authorities, HM Prison Service, Compass Seminars Australia, SF Academy, Singapore and Krotkoterminowej Therapy Centre, Poland and Lviv-Bryukhovychi Seminary, Ukraine.

John has a background in psychology, is a qualified counsellor and a member of the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP). He is also a presenter at both the European Brief Therapy Association (EBTA) and Solutions in Organisations Link-up (SOL), being a founder member of the latter.

John delivers a broad portfolio of intensive solution focused brief therapy workshops to many and various organisations, enabling staff to be more time- and cost-effective. Also, he has developed a special interest in three specialist areas.

The first of these is Solution Focused Recovery from Severe Trauma & Stress. As a SF therapist, he has worked successfully with many survivors of traumatic experiences such as military combat, armed robbery, near-death experiences, rape, road traffic accidents and sudden death. John teaches how both the basic SF techniques and advanced techniques are applied, for successful outcomes with such clients. His two books on the subject are:

  • Henden, J. (2011). Beating Combat Stress: 101 Techniques for Recovery. Wiley-Blackwell; and, 

  • Henden, J. (2017). What it Takes to Thrive; techniques for severe trauma &    stress recovery. World Scientific Publishing

His second specialist subject area is Suicide Prevention, and the book on this subject, which is currently being translated into Japanese and Russian, is:

  • Henden, J. (2017). Preventing Suicide: the Solution Focused Approach. Second edition. Wiley-Blackwell

John's third specialist area is Solution Focused Stress Management and Resilience. (This is also referred to as Solution Focused Healthy Work-Life Balancing.)

As a counsellor and therapist for individual work, unsurprisingly, John’s preferred approach is Solution Focused. He finds this approach applicable to the widest range of mental health issues, including chronic depression, relationship difficulties, schizo-affective states, alcohol dependency; and, of course, acute stress and anxiety, trauma survivors and suicide prevention. Within the last 30 years, John has worked with some 400 individual clients from public, private and voluntary sector organisations.

As a trainer, in adopting an action-learning approach, John has an energetic and captivating teaching style, which enables participants to remain both alert and involved throughout.  His alternating use of short presentations, audio visuals, paired and small group work, ensures not only all learning styles are catered for, but participants find the training both enjoyable and worthwhile.

Online workshop with John Henden

The more of our teams who understand and are skilled to address trauma and stress recovery, the greater the potential impact on our community's mental health. Join John for this online workshop specifically on Severe Trauma and Stress Recovery using the Solution Focused Approach.

Book both workshops and receive a discount. Contact Faye for more information.

Date & Location


Tuesday, 10 October 2023

The Parnell Hotel & Conference Centre
10/20 Gladstone Road, Parnell, Auckland 1052

Limited onsite or street parking available.

Workshop times - 9.00am - 3.30pm, with Registration with Welcome tea & coffee from 8.30am


One Day Workshop
$355.00 inclusive of GST

Discount available for Students or unfunded attendees.

The price stated is per person. If you are sending 5 or more delegates, please email us for a discounted rate.


Payment online is by Debit or Credit Card: VISA, Mastercard or American Express only and there are 3 easy steps to complete the online booking process.

Our registration platform is hosted by Lil Regie, our NZ based booking agent. Upon completing your registration by hitting the blue 'Confirm Booking' button, you will receive an automated email confirming the booking and amount paid by credit card. A GST Tax Invoice showing your payment in full will also be emailed to you.

If you have any issues or questions about your booking, please contact Faye Johnson on 027 607 3000 or email:

Invoicing Information

We work hard to ensure that all workshops are cost effective by automating our systems. If your organisation is unable to use our automated booking system and pay by credit/debit card and therefore require an invoice instead to pay by direct bank credit, there will be a $25.00 inc GST surcharge for this, and you will need to supply the following please:

  1. The full organisation name and postal address required to appear on the invoice.

  2. The contact name and email of the person(s) responsible for authorising this expense and approving payment.

  3. Any purchase order references required on vendor invoices.

Please email this information to Brian - and , and along with the Invoice we will also send you a special booking link which will come up as free of charge. Through this link you will need to complete your registration. 

Our workshops fill quickly so if you would like to reserve a place, please contact

What happens if you have to cancel?

We know that sometimes your plans can change for many different reasons. Should you be unable to attend, a substitute delegate is welcome to attend at no extra cost. If a substitute delegate is not available and you need to cancel your registration, please be aware of the following:

Face-Face Events - Up to 7 days prior to the event you will be provided a refund of your registration cost, less a $60.00 inc GST per attendee service charge.

Online Events - Up to 7 days prior to the event you will be provided a refund of your registration cost, less a $20.00 inc GST per attendee service charge.

If you cancel within 7 days of the event, you are not eligible to receive a refund. Please note: should your registration not be paid by the time of the event, you are still liable to make the payment. Unpaid accounts may be passed over to our debt collection agency and additional costs may be incurred. 

All cancellations must be received in writing (email). 

Delegates are responsible for their own travel/accommodation bookings and no compensation will be made should the event be rescheduled or cancelled.

For more information see our full Terms of Trade.

Further Details

Resources will be emailed to participants prior to the workshop. In line with our sustainability objectives, speaker presentations will not be distributed in hard copy, however attendees are invited to print them off and bring these with them or download them to any device they plan to take on the day.

Arrival tea and coffee, morning tea and lunch are included.

Commitment to Access and Equity
We are committed to access and equity and endeavour to meet the needs of all delegates. Please contact Faye - / 027 607 3000 if you require special assistance. In order to assist us in understanding delegate needs, please advise your access requirements as early as possible. Request at late notice may not be able to be met.

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For further details, please contact:
p: 027 607 3000


For further details, please contact:
Faye Johnson at or
Phone: 027 607 3000