Rotary club supports suicide awareness walk

THE Rotary Club of Kangaroo Flat has thrown its support behind next month’s second annual Bendigo Suicide Awareness Walk. 

The Suicide Prevention Awareness Network central Victoria group has planned the March 24 walk to raise awareness of suicide in the community and to allow people to remember loved ones, friends and work colleagues lost.

The walk will start from the Dai Gum San Chinese precinct at 11am with Rotarians providing a free sausage sizzle for walkers. 

Rotary Club of Kangaroo Flat president Jill Barker said suicide awareness was an important issue that needed to be addressed within the community. 

“It is bad news and I think people need to be encouraged to speak up and to start talking about their depression or whatever is driving them towards thinking about suicide,” she said.

Ms Barker hoped the suicide awareness walk would start a conversation the community needed to have. 

“It seems to be a taboo subject and there seems to be too many young lives lost,” she said. Rotarian Bruce McClure said the Rotary Club was always supporting community events and that this event would be no different. “If we can raise the awareness of suicide in Bendigo then it is well worth doing,” he said.   

    The SPAN central Victoria group is also inviting residents to take part in the making of a memorial quilt to raise awareness of suicide prevention.

The Kangaroo Flat Uniting Church craft group will stitch the quilt made of material squares that can be collected from the Bendigo Advertiser in Queen Street during office hours.

SPAN spokeswoman Haylee Kennedy said people could decorate the squares by stitching on something significant, painting favourite song lyrics or adding beading or ribbon.

She said fabric squares should be returned to the Bendigo Advertiser by close of business on Thursday so the memorial quilt could be made for display at the walk on March 24.

Any businesses, groups or individuals wanting to support the Suicide Awareness Walk should call Haylee Kennedy on 0418 648 233 or Alannah McGregor on 0408 541 082.

If you need immediate assistance or support, please contact MensLine Australia on 1300 789978 or Lifeline on 131114.

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