April 16, 2007
The gardai were joined by several hundred members of the public as they walked 10 km in five Co Donegal towns in a bid to raise aware-ness about suicide.
Organiser Sgt Sarah Hargadon said they hope to encourage people who are feeling depressed to seek help. She said: "We want to send out a strong message that there is an alternative to suicide which is dialogue. There are a lot of support groups out there to help people who are lonely or depressed and are contemplating suicide."
Central Statistics Office figures show there were more suicides in Co Donegal in the first five years of the millenniu than during the entire 1980s.The yearly average then was six. The annual figure was up to 16 in the first five years ofthis decade.Sgt Hargadon added:"It is definitely a problem. There are more deaths by suicide than deaths on the road yet very little attention is given to deaths by suicide."
Last year, gardai raised €33,500 for five charities and hope to top that with yesterday's walks. The money will be divided between the Samaritans, Aware,Grow and two other local charities which provide family support.
Irish Daily STAR, Page 20, 16-Apr-2007