Tattoo-athon raises over €3,400 to help suicide prevention centre
By Mary Dennehy
MORE than €3,400 was raised through a community-led tattoo day in Tallaght on Good Friday, with the money raised making a lasting mark on the future of a local suicide awareness service.
This is the fourth year that a group of young adults from St Aengus, Castlepark and Balrothery have organised a charity tattoo-athon – with money in the past going to Pieta House and Tallaght-based suicide education project, NINA (Need Information Need Advice) for Life.
This year, the event was held in St Aengus Community Centre in aid of HOPE (Hold on Pain Eases), a suicide prevention drop-in service on Main Street, Tallaght, which was established by Tallaght mother and former Tallaght Person of the Year, Mary McLoughlin, in June, 2013.
Led by resident Patrick Fay, the 12-hour tattoo day saw 107 people inked on the day – with tattooist Derek S Place branding people with a choice of six inspirational tattoos.
Mary McLoughlin told The Echo: “I’m overwhelmed by the response on the day, there was a great buzz and so many people dropped in to show their support.
“The €3,447 raised will really make a big difference to HOPE and will pay for a year’s rent and insurance and help us to deliver suicide intervention and prevention training in the community.
“It was amazing to see so many people there for the same reason, and so many people talking about mental health and suicide – and alongside raising money, the event really raised vital awareness around HOPE and other support services.”
She added: “We can’t thank all of the organisers and members of the public enough, so much went into getting this event off the ground and we’re so grateful.”
Organiser Patrick Fay told The Echo: “There are so many people to thank for the success of the event, so many people worked together and we are so thankful to all of the volunteers, those who donated raffle prizes or who came along on the day – it was such a positive event.”
The HOPE drop-in service opens every Tuesday from 7pm to 9pm in Trustus House on Main Road, Tallaght. For further details visit the HOPE Facebook page or call Mary McLoughlin on 087 1363082.