Port Stephens Suicide Prevention Network Walk with Us Suicide Remembrance Day

Restoring Hope over the Port Stephens Area (photo Jewell Drury)
Restoring Hope over the Port Stephens Area (photo Jewell Drury)

IT is estimated that 2,000 Australians die by suicide every year, affecting families, friends, workplaces and communities.

Port Stephens Suicide Prevention Network held this year’s “Walk With Us” at Boat Harbour, on the 10 September .

The Walk With Us event invites people affected by suicide to remember their loved one and to support others who are carrying a similar burden.

This beautiful and inspiring project has seen hundreds of people from the local community involved in big and small ways.

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The network has established pathways, gardens, a bench seat, artwork and a beautiful ‘Cairn’ that is now 7ft high.

I hear you ask what is a Cairn?

“A Cairn is a place of Memorial, where people can place a rock or stone on top of the ones already there as a memoriam to a lost loved one or in honour of their own survival,” Elizabeth Schiemer, Secretary of the Network, told News Of The Area.

“As you follow the path of this beautiful place of serenity you will come to the place where the Cairns sits,” Elizabeth said.

“It is now just over 7ft high and more stones are being added daily.”

The annual event, ‘Walk with Us’ day attracted more than 200 people to the event with entertainment by “Summer Breeze” and Special Guest Speaker, Soraya Saraswati.

The area has become a dedicated place for peace and reflection and is an absolute credit to everyone who has been involved in the transformation.

It has been an ongoing inspiring project that has engaged hundreds of people as they come together to create such a beautiful space.

A huge thank you to Dave Sams, Peter and Gail Murray for their proactive leadership, action, encouragement and inspiration, Port Stephens Recycling Centre, Anna Bay Paint, Profencing, Boral, Boat Harbour Parks and Reserves and Port Stephens Council.

Special ongoing thanks goes to a group of Tomaree High Students who are an absolute credit to their generation as the students and teachers regularly maintain the gardens and project for the network.

“The path, landscaping, seat and artwork were designed by local artist Rick Pettit,” Elizabeth Scheimer said.

You are invited to visit this special place to meditate and reflect on the importance of life, love, friendship and family.

Our lives can become so busy and it is easy to forget what is really important.

If you need someone to talk to please call Lifeline 13 11 14  Kids Helpline 1800 55 1800Beyond Blue 1300 224 636 or Mensline Australia 1300 789 078.

[NOTE: Your new free local community paper, Bay News Of The Area, will hit newsstands throughout Tomaree – first edition on 6 October 2016. Support your new independent paper]

By Jewell DRURY


7ft Cairn memorial stone monument.(left) Memorial Monument looking over the coastline(right)
7ft Cairn memorial stone monument.(left) Memorial Monument looking over the coastline(right)


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