AROUND 150 local motorcycle enthusiasts will be riding between Byron Bay to Alstonville on November 6.
It is for the seventh annual Northern Rider Quarterly Magazine social ride 'Compression v Depression' to raise funds for the Lifeline Norther Rivers 24/7 crisis support and suicide prevention service.
Bike to be won
The event aims to raise awareness and money as Mental Health Week draws to a close, this year featuring a fundraising raffle with a grand prize of a Suzuki DR 650SE Motorbike valued at $8000.
Editor of Northern Rider Quarterly Magazine and Event Coordinator Nicholas Kostyn says that he is incredibly proud of how community-minded it is.
"What I love about it is that the money is raised in our community, stays in in our community and serves our community as it all goes directly to Lifeline Northern Rivers," he said.
"We are looking forward to a great event that will allow us to celebrate our love of motorcycling with a few mates, encourage all road users to look twice for bikes and raise money for a worthy local cause."
Reaching out to those who are hard to reach
Lifeline Northern River Centre Manager Niall Mulligan said that the event allows them to reach out to a demographic that is in need of support, and often hard to reach.
"Three quarters of all suicides are men, we know that men sometimes struggle to ask for help when they need to do so, and this is a great event for these men to get together and acknowledge the fact that everybody can be subject to mental health concerns and that as a community we should be open to talking about and de-stigmatising these concerns," he said.
"It's an ideal opportunity to remind everybody to look out for the emotional well-being of themselves, their family, their mates and their community."
Major sponsor of the event
The Health Services Union NSW/ACT is a major sponsor of the event and State Secretary Gerard Hayes recognises the importance of Lifeline Northern Rivers in terms of crisis support and suicide prevention.
"Lifeline Northern Rivers plays an important role in our community and it is great to see so many people coming together to help break down the stigmas associated with mental health and to let those in need know they have friends and organisations they can talk to," he said.
The event begins at the Green Garage in Byron Bay for an informal 'show n' shine' and registration before departing at 9am to finish up at the Alstonville Bowling Club for the main prize draw at 3:30pm.
Tickets are $10 each and available either in person from The Green Garage, Plateau Sports Club Alstonville, Blue Kitchen South Lismore, B-Line Auto Ballina & Mullumbimby, The Lunatic Hotel Drake and Lifeline stores in the region, via email through firstname.lastname@example.org or over the phone from Lifeline's Crisis Support Centre.
Lifeline Norther Rivers Crisis Support Line runs 24/7, anyone in distress can call on 6622 4133.
For more information on mental health conditions and support visit www.beyondblue.org.au