Foyle College to host Mental Health Event for Cycle Against Suicid e
10,000 cyclists, 1,400 kms, 2 weeks, ONE goal
It’s ok to feel ok; and it’s absolutely ok to ask for help
Foyle College is delighted to be named as Northern Ireland Anchor School for the 2015 Cycle Against Suicide. The Cycle starts in Belfast on Monday, 27th April and covers the entire island of Ireland for two weeks before finishing in Dublin on Sunday, May 10th.
Foyle Collegewill welcome a few hundred cyclists on the evening of Tuesday 28th April and local families will host the cyclists overnight. Foyle College, together with Cycle Against Suicide, will organise a mental health event on the following morning, with presentations, videos, music, celebrity speakers and an exhibition of local mental health services. The Cycle will then make its way to Omagh for the afternoon stop before arriving in Eniskillen that evening.
Sandra O' Connell, the Link teacher for Foyle College said: “Our school is delighted to host this important event and welcome the cyclists to our City. The impact of this type of event is powerful and far reaching, not just in our schools, but also in the community at large. It encourages conversations around mental health and highlights the support services that are available to those in need of them.”
“Promoting positive mental health practices is an important task in our school, we hold an Awareness Week in March each year for our GCSE pupils. By becoming an Anchor School, and partnering with Cycle Against Suicide, we continue to raise awareness of the issues around mental health and suicide. It’s about encouraging everyone to know that it’s absolutely ok to ask for help.”
Cycle Against Suicide founder, Jim Breen said: “This is thethird year of the Cycle Against Suicide and we’re blown away with the phenomenal response from the schools involved in the Cycle. These schools are critical to helping us spread the message that it’s ok not to feel ok; and it’s absolutely ok to ask for help. Each year over the two weeks of our annual Cycle, we give presentations in schools and communities all around the island of Ireland and we witness how hugely responsive students are to that message. We also see the value students place on their own mental wellbeing and that of their friends and families.”
Cycle Against Suicide offers a Homestay programme, which sees homeowners providing a bed and hot meal to participants in the Cycle. Cycle Against Suicide Homestay Coordinator, Dudley Farrell said “There is still time for people living in the Derry/Londonderry area to offer accommodation to participants for a night when the Cycle passes through.”
“People who opened up their homes to cyclists in the last two years have said overwhelmingly that the Homestay experience was just as rewarding for them as it was for their guests,” said Farrell.
“The number of cyclists registering for Cycle Against Suicide is increasing year on year. As a result, we need more accommodation for cyclists and crew. We are more than happy to avail of as many spare beds as possible, right until we arrive on Tuesday the 28th April. Of course we’ll also need many volunteers to help make our time in thw city memorable. Whether it’s sandwich-makers, road marshals or just people standing at the side of the road to cheer on the Cycle, we can all play our part in breaking the cycle of suicide on the island of Ireland.”
Further information on Cycle Against Suicide on www.cycleagainstsuicide.com, where you can also register for some or all of the 14 days of the Cycle Against Suicide 2015.