Over 300 turn out for Nina community-led Sunrise Walk

Over 300 turn out for Nina community-led Sunrise Walk

By Mary Dennehy

MORE than 300 people took part in the fifth annual, community-led NINA for Life Sunrise Walk last weekend.

Established by a team of Kingswood parents, NINA for Life is a voluntary organisation that provides community-based education and training in the area of suicide and mental health.

NINA Sunrise Walk 2019 3 1

Jean Haas (black top) with Simon Sweeney, Sinead Tighe and Mary McLoughlin (all former Tallaght Person of the Year recipients) and the current Tallaght Person of the Year, Gar Tyrrell Photo by David Doyle

Promoting awareness and providing information at grassroots level, NINA (Need Information Need Advice) works to break the stigma around mental health.

Speaking with The Echo after the event, Jean Haas, who lost her 18-year-old son Chris to suicide in February 2013, said that they hope that the walk helped promote the message that nobody is alone.

“We hope that no family has to go through what we went through,” Jean said.

“You are not alone, reach out . . . people do care.

“Together we are strong.”

Organised by the community for the community, the Sunrise Walk saw more than 300 people take part this year.

“On behalf of everyone involved with NINA for Life, we were once again overwhelmed with the 300 fantastic people who got out of their beds to walk on our fifth NINA for Life Sunrise Walk,” Jean said.

“A heartfelt ‘thank you’ to each and every one of you.”

Jean also thanked all of the volunteers, Kingswood Youth Choir, Pauline and Paul Dalton, Cllr Charlie O’Connor for reading a poem, Father Fergus for blessing the walk, and Tallaght Person of the Year Gar Tyrrell for opening the walk.

Thanks were also extended to Annie Murray Sullivan and her daughters for looking after registrations, the Red Cross, James Bradshaw, Jenny McGrath, Digi Print Ireland, David Doyle, Christoperher Corcoran and of course, the Nina Buddy Bear.

“NINA for Life would not be able to do any of this without all of these fantastic people”, Jean said.

For further information on NINA, which has its annual community mental health awareness day on June 29, visit the group’s Facebook page.

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