Frank Bristol

Frank is a 4th generation Whanganui citizen and worked as a partner in a horticultural operation with his late wife Joy for most of his working life. They specialised in vegetable seed and plant growing but perhaps are best publicly known for their work with “Wanganui in Bloom” for 26 years.

Early in his life Frank was taken out of school and admitted to Lake Alice asylum where he survived psychiatric treatment of that era. From 2004 Frank became involved in developing community-based peer run Mental Health & addictions services. Frank was the Poutu Whakahaere/General Manager of the peer governed and run mental health and addiction service Balance Aotearoa for 15 years until his retirement in December 2022.   He has been a speaker on self-management at various Mental Health conferences in NZ, Australia, United Kingdom, USA and Canada. He is passionate about approaches based on relationship-based philosophies embodied in Māori wisdom and Intentional Peer Support.

Frank has two adult daughters, and five grandchildren and continues to live on a small farm on the banks of the Whanganui awa. Frank spends much of his time now in his heirloom apple orchard, growing heirloom tomato seed and looking after a small herd of Dexter cattle.