Our Student Counsellor Mr Murray Guy has put together a blog post about the upcoming R U OK Day on 13 September. The blog post is part of our student well-being blog published twice a term.
R U OK?
By Mr Murray Guy, Student Counsellor
R U OK Day, on 13 September, was founded by Gavin Larkin who lost his father Barry Larkin to suicide in 1995. In 2009, Gavin, while working on a documentary in collaboration with Janine Nearn, realised there needed to be more to raise awareness. From this RUOK? was born.
Gavin was passionate of the fact that a conversation could change a life and made it his legacy to create a National Conversation Movement that would equip Australians with the skills and confidence to support those struggling with life. Gavin lost his battle with cancer in 2011.
Life changing conversations
We can all play a part by asking the question “Are you OK?” and the basic guide is to ask ourselves, are we ready and prepared, and in a suitable environment and time. Having asked the question, we need to listen without judgement and to encourage the person to action. It also is important to follow up and continue support. Staying connected and having meaningful conversations is something we can all do. You don’t need to be an expert – just a good friend and a great listener. So, if you notice someone who might be struggling – start a conversation. Conversations need to happen every day.
Encourage more people in school, your workplace or in the community to ask R U OK? There is a lot of information and resources available on the R U OK? Website at https://www.ruok.org.au
If you are concerned that someone is at risk of suicide, contact Lifeline (a 24/7 crisis service) at 13 11 14. You can also contact Headspace at 1800 650 890 or via https://eheadspace.org.au. Headspace is a telephone and online service that supports young people and their families going through a tough time. If a life is in danger call 000.