Around 1,000 cyclists are to converge in Portadown next week in a bid to highlight suicide awareness.
Drumcree College is acting as an anchor school for the 2016 Cycle Against Suicide, part of a two week cycle covering the entire island of Ireland.
The College will welcome the cyclists for lunch on Tuesday, April 26 and, together with Cycle Against Suicide, will organise a mental health event comprising of presentations, videos, music, celebrity speakers and an exhibition of local mental health services.
Frances McCann, the Link Teacher for Drumcree College said: “Our school is delighted to host this important event and welcome the cyclists to Portadown. The impact of this type of activity is powerful and far reaching, not just in our schools, but also in the community at large.
“It gets the conversation around mental health going, and highlights the support services that are available to those who need “Promoting positive mental health practices in our school, and the community, is an important task to Drumcree College. By becoming an Anchor Schoo we can continue to raise awareness of the issues around mental health and suicide. It’s about encouraging people to know that it’s absolutely okay to ask for help.”
Cycle Against Suicide founder, Jim Breen said: “This is the fourth year of Cycle Against Suicide and we’re blown away by the phenomenal response from the schools. These schools are critical in 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 Ireland, and we witness how hugely responsive students are to that message.”
They plan to cycle from the Armagh Rd through the town centre and left after the Pizza Pallazo. They will go up onto the Northway, down past Dennys, down Charles St then up to Drumcree College.
The event involves 10,000 cyclists travelling around Ireland one message: “It’s OK not to feel OK: and it’s absolutely OK to ask for help”. www.cycleagainstsuicide.com.