A total of 268 alternative education students from New Zealand were surveyed to examine risk and protective factors for depression within the social environment. Twenty-eight (35.4%) of the girls and 31 (21.1%) of the boys had cut-off scores that indicated a high likelihood of significant psychopathology from depression. Multivariate analysis demonstrated that family and peer connections were protective against depression. High levels of poverty, witnessing violence at home, and experiencing bullying at school were significant risk factors for depression.