Isolated and Lonely; New Zealanders Fare Worst For Social Connectedness: Sovereign Wellbeing Index

Sovereign Wellbeing Index

New Zealand fared poorly in the Sovereign Wellbeing Index


The latest biennial Sovereign Wellbeing Index has been published, and it’s still not good news for New Zealand, with no improvement since the 2013 survey.

It appears the lack of a social life, and an almost negligible sense of community, is affecting people’s wellbeing in the most remote country on earth, something to consider if you’re from Europe and leaving friends and family to emigrate to New Zealand. Having a support network and somewhere positive to raise your kids is far more important than you’d realise

Kiwis are socially disconnected and it is taking a toll on their wellbeing, according to a new study.

The Sovereign Wellbeing Index 2015 results found almost 40 per cent of New Zealanders only met with others socially once a month or less.

Meanwhile, only 4 per cent of the 10,000 New Zealanders surveyed said they felt close to people in their local area.

New Zealand fared the worst when it came to social connections and community compared to 29 European countries that carried out the same studysource

The 29 European Countries compared to New Zealand are those included in the biennial European Social Survey.

Poor support networks and NZ cities built for cars not people

The study was conducted by the Auckland University of Technology’s ‘Human Potential Centre’ and the insurance company Sovereign…

AUT University professor of public health Grant Schofield said having meaningful relationships and investing time in them was important. Kiwis could improve their wellbeing and resilience by volunteering time, getting involved in groups and getting to know people around them, Schofield said.

“Having a support network in place when things go wrong helps us to bounce back quicker.” Schofield said community design played a large part in fostering connections. New Zealand cities, particularly Auckland, were built for cars, not people, he said…read more

The survey also revealed that 2 out of every 3 young people in New Zealand show signs of a depressed mood, something to bear in mind if you’re taking your kids there because you think it’ll be a better place for them to grow up. Add that to the country’s appallingly high youth suicide record (the rate for females is the highest in the OECD and males aren’t far befind) and you may want to consider somewhere else.

Here’s the rankings for the wellbeing features, compared to 29 European countries, New Zealand ranks in the bottom 10 across all scale items. After reading this you may decide to stay put or look somewhere else…
index featuresThis year’s report continues the theme established in the 2013 report, which we wrote about in July 2013: Study reveals startling new data on wellbeing – or the lack of it – in NZ

On the day that the NZ Government launched a fresh campaign to rob beneficiaries of their basic human rights (further evidence of the runaway poverty gap the country suffers from) Sovereign life insurance has issued a press release showing that New Zealand fares badly in international standards of wellbeing.

In comparison to 22 European countries using the same set of measurements, New Zealand consistently ranked near the bottom in personal and social wellbeing – far behind the Scandinavian countries in the lead.

Among the most surprising results were New Zealanders’ disconnectedness from their communities (this sent them to the bottom of the table) and nearly two thirds of young people showing signs of depressed mood. Last year Sovereign announced it was to sponsor Youthline, which provides a 24-hour helpline that fields more than 15,000 contacts a month from young people needing support for issues from bullying to loneliness. It subsequently provided much of a $100,000 contribution to the organisation in May.

You can Read the full report here. We predict it will be some time before it makes it into the mainstream media. Let us know if you see it reported on…continue reading


Childrens’ graves desecrated at an Auckland cemetery – link