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Tee-Up Golf Day 2021 in Traralgon raises $20,000 for suicide prevention and mental health with help of Russell Northe and Rotary Club

Member for Morwell, Russell Northe has spoken of his pride with regards to the business and community support that was received for the 2021 Tee-Up for Mental Health Day to which Mr Northe co-hosted along with the Rotary Club of Traralgon.

By news@gippsland - 1st March 2022 - Back to News

Mr Russell Northe said that the purpose of the day was to raise awareness around mental health and suicide prevention, whilst raising funds for key service providers in the region including:

  • Lifeline Gippsland
  • Talking Mental Health
  • Rotary Club of Traralgon

"The support we had from generous sponsors, donors and players was really overwhelming, we simply couldn't have achieved the great outcome that we did without their willingness to jump on board and support this important cause" Mr Northe commenced.

Mental Health as we know is an issue that keeps growing by the day, and one key component of helping to recognise the signs of mental health distress in someone close to you is to complete a Mental Health First Aid training course

Mental Health as we know is an issue that keeps growing by the day, and one key component of helping to recognise the signs of mental health distress in someone close to you is to complete a Mental Health First Aid training course

Support and assistance

Mr Northe said, "To raise just over $20,000 in the current economic climate is an extraordinary feat in anyone's language and is a demonstration of the goodwill and generosity that exists in our community whilst also acknowledging the importance of local mental health and suicide prevention programs in our community."

"In conjunction with the Rotary Club of Traralgon I am absolutely thrilled to be able to assist in the handing over of more than $10,000 to Lifeline Gippsland so they can continue to enhance their critical suicide prevention programs."

"In addition more than $10,000 is being allocated to the Talking Mental Health/Rotary Club partnership who are delivering first-aid mental health training across the region, with Rotary utilising some of those same funds to provide support and assistance to vulnerable persons in our community including the homeless and our youth" Mr Northe said.

Support in needed services

CEO of Lifeline Gippsland, Michelle Possingham said "The staff and volunteers at Lifeline Gippsland would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to Russell Northe, Rotary Club of Traralgon, sponsors and players of the 2021 Tee-Up for Mental Health Golf Day."

"This has been a year when Lifeline's crisis support services have been needed more than ever before in our 58 year history. Month after month we received a record breaking number of calls from people who needed someone to talk to."

"While this put a lot of strain on the service we were relieved that people were reaching out for help, rather than trying to get through these challenging times alone. What many people don't know is that Lifeline Gippsland receives only a quarter of the funding that it takes to run the 13 11 14 crisis phone line." Ms Possingham said.

Enabling the training

Ms Possingham also said, "It is because of the generosity of people like you; however it was that you contributed, that we can keep our lights on as we work toward our commitment of ensuring that nobody has to face their darkest moment alone."

"One of the biggest challenges we face is the cost of training the people who answer the phones. Our training spans twelve months, and it costs almost $3000 to train each person. We charge only a small portion of this fee."

"The money that was raised through the golf day will enable us to train five new Crisis Supporters who will respond to calls on the 13 11 14 national crisis line. The people who call us mothers, fathers, daughters, sons, sisters, brothers. They are people who are hurting." Ms Possingham continued.

Providing hope for the people

Ms Possingham said, "Thanks to you, our service can continue to support them through some of life's most difficult experiences, and provide the hope that people need to face the next moment, day, week or year. Each Crisis Supporter volunteers at least 94 hours each year, answering a call every half hour on average."

"This means that the funds raised will mean that almost 1000 calls will be answered, in their first year of volunteering alone. Most of our volunteers stay with us for many years, so the lives that you have saved by supporting this day is immeasurable". Ms Possingham said.

Proceeds of the funds raised

Peter Wallis, President of the Rotary Club of Traralgon said "We are delighted at the success of the Golf day and the funds we raised to further the good work of Lifeline Gippsland and the Traralgon Rotary Club in our community We intend to put half our funds to assist in the facilitation of more Mental Health awareness training and the remaining funds to assist in programs for the youth and homeless in our community."

"We have recently accepted the challenge to prepare lunches for students that present to school without food to sustain them through a day of learning life skills. We are also looking how best we can assist the homeless as we are able, so the funds raised on the golf day will make a big difference to the lives of those doing it tough in our region". Mr Wallis said.

Youth mental health first aid training

Ann Hamden of Talking Mental Health said "The money raised from the Tee-Up for Mental Health Golf Day will enable even more local people to complete Youth Mental Health First Aid training (YMHFA).The more people we can train to look out for signs of mental health problems and also deal with crisis situations, the safer our young people will be in our community."

"This evidence based training focuses on improving mental health literacy and early intervention. YMHFA is aimed at adults who work, live or care for young people aged 12-25 such as parents, sports coaches, school support staff, community group leaders and youth workers. Adolescence is a time of important change and development. It is also the time when mental health problems can first emerge."

"During high school years, mental health problems are among the leading causes of falling grades, problems with friends, and relationships, substance use or abuse and they can have lifelong impact. We want to reduce these risks as much as we can by having adults confident, comfortable and skilled to deal with young people and their mental health. Thank you to everyone who contributed to this year's Tee-Up for Mental Health golf day." Ms Hamden said.

Supporting individuals and families

Mr Northe also said "I wish to give a big shout out to the ACSO crew who volunteered their time and effort to help out on the day. These amazing people do an incredible job in supporting individuals and families dealing with drug, alcohol and mental health challenges in our community. We appreciate all that you do and thank you for being part of our golf day".

"In closing, I just want to say how proud I am of every person who contributed to this event, as the funds raised will make a positive difference to organisations who deliver critical services in our community, and I don't think it's a bridge too far in saying we might just save lives as a result of our collective efforts" Mr Northe concluded.

Pictures from Russell Northe MP website.


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