AWARE – the depression charity for Northern Ireland, is calling out for people to step out on a 5k walk to mark World Suicide Prevention Day in early September and to raise funds for the charity to continue the work they do to support those living with depression, anxiety and bipolar.

Northern Ireland has the highest suicide rate of any part of the UK and Ireland, and therefore AWARE works hard to meet people at the stages before crisis in order to support them and help them build resilience to deal with life’s challenges and heartbreaks. The charity provides ‘Living Life to the Full’ and ‘Mood Matters’ awareness training to people of all demographics, from schools to the elderly, ensuring local people get the help they need to combat negative thinking and start their road to recovery. AWARE works continuously to break down the stigma surrounding the term ‘mental health’ and offers free-to-attend support groups all around Northern Ireland for people to meet with other people experiencing depression.

The events are taking place in Belfast from Stormont Estate (Sunday 1st September), Derry/Londonderry Foyle area and in Omagh from the Community House (Sunday 8th September.) The charity has chosen to call these events ‘AWARE Mood Walks’ as exercise has a positive effect on a person’s mental wellbeing and helps reduce the risk of depression, stress, and anxiety. When we exercise, the brain releases a hormone called ‘endorphins’ also known as ‘the happy hormone’ which is known to lift your mood and make you feel good.

These are family-friendly events, and AWARE encourages all ages to attend to show their support for each other in their mental health journey.

Registration and more information is found on the AWARE website: https://www.aware-ni.org/mood-walks/

And it is important to remember that every penny raised for AWARE stays in Northern Ireland!

Karen Collins – Chief Executive of AWARE says,

“Our Mood Walks are very important events for AWARE. They mark the work that we do all year round to support those living in Northern Ireland with depression, anxiety and bipolar in hopes that we can reach people before the stage of crisis.”

“We are seeing the stigma surrounding mental health reducing dramatically here in Northern Ireland and that is such a positive step forward. People are becoming  much more aware of the importance of protecting our minds and supporting each other to move forward on a journey towards better mental wellbeing.”

“We hope that you can join us on our 5k Mood Walks to mark World Suicide Prevention Day and together we can step out to lift our moods, feel good and support each other towards better mental health for Northern Ireland!”

  • Please encourage registration for all participants on AWARE website: https://www.aware-ni.org/mood-walks/
  • Belfast Walk – 9.30am, Stormont Estate, 1st September
  • Foyle Walk – 9.30am, Pure Gym Car Park, 8th September
  • Omagh Walk- 1.30pm, Community House, Market Street, 8th September
  • Registration fee includes a t-shirt and a medal.

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