Image: The large turnout of bikers at Helensvale for the Black Dog Charity Ride 2013. Credit: Cas Allan
More than 500 motorbike riders turned out on Sunday in a massive display of support for the annual Black Dog Ride in aid of Lifeline.
The Black Dog charity ride is run throughout Australia each year in late March to promote awareness of depression and suicide prevention.
Spokesperson for Lifeline, which will be the recipient of the fundraising from the Gold Coast ride, Gayle Murray, said Lifeline is always grateful for fundraising and awareness raising events such as the Black Dog Ride.
“Lifeline is involved in making people aware of mental illness and trying to remove the social stigma that is involved,” said Ms Murray.
“Mental illness affects the whole community and we need to be talking about it,” she said.
“We are here to make people aware that they can reach out and phone someone if they need to.”
Helensvale, at the northern end of the Gold Coast, was the meeting place for the hundreds of riders who enjoyed breakfast on the forecourt of Shark Leathers before riding to Beaudesert in the Gold Coast hinterland for morning tea and then on to Boonah for lunch.
Kylie Sage of Kysa Moto Bikes, the organisers of the event, said she was overwhelmed at the turnout.
“Last night we counted 347 online registrations for riders and we have had 150 registrations in person this morning,” she said.
17 rides were registered this year with the national charity including three in Queensland at the Gold Coast, Mackay and Townsville.
The annual ride was started in 2009 by Steve Andrews in memory of a close friend who had suffered from depression which is presumed to have led to her suicide in 2008.
To contact Lifeline phone 13 11 14. This number is a confidential telephone crisis support service available 24/7 from a landline, payphone or mobile. Volunteers for phone services are very welcome.
To contact Beyond Blue info line phone 1300 22 46 36.
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