Darwin suicide memorial service offers support, comfort and hope for those who have lost loved ones

People who have been impacted by the death of a loved one or friend by suicide will be given the opportunity to come together to remember and grieve at a memorial service in Darwin on Thursday 5 September 2019 between 5pm and 6pm.

The Wesley LifeForce Suicide Memorial Service will be held at the Royal Flying Doctor Service Tourist Facility, 45 Stokes Hill Road, Stokes Hill Wharf, Darwin.

The service, now in its third year, gives people the opportunity to come together and share their sorrow in a spirit of comfort, support and hope, and to honour the memory of their loved ones. 

The CEO of Wesley Mission, the Rev Keith V Garner AM, who will deliver a message of hope, said the loss by suicide is a devastating experience.

“The grief associated with suicide is complex and very difficult. Family members and friends can feel abandoned or rejected. Myriad questions often remain unanswered and, unfortunately, stigma remains,” Mr Garner said.

“The death of a loved one to suicide is life-changing for those left behind. The process of mending a broken heart does not take a week, a month or a year but a lifetime.

“The road to healing is not only long, but can be bumpy with many obstacles in the way. However, by drawing upon inner resources and by being in touch with our feelings, we can find an appropriate attitude to the past, the present and the future.

“The annual Wesley LifeForce Suicide Memorial Service is an opportunity for those bereaved by suicide to know that they are not alone and are part of a genuine and caring community.”

There will be a smoking ceremony and Welcome to Country from the Larrakia Nation. The event will include reflective songs and a performance by music therapist Crystal Robins.

On the Wesley LifeForce Memorial Wall, people will be able to place messages remembering the lives of those lost to suicide. Counsellors will be present to offer support. Messages can also be posted on the online memorial wall.

The service will finish with a flower ceremony, with people being invited to place sunflowers in the water.   

People who have been impacted by suicide can contact Lifeline, a 24-hour Telephone Crisis Support service on 13 11 14.

About Wesley LifeForce

Established in 1995, Wesley LifeForce began as a response to the growing number of suicide deaths in Australia. It is a national program providing suicide prevention services that educate and empower local communities, supporting people most at risk. More than 40,000 people have been trained through the program. For further information click here.

For media enquiries please contact:         

Jane Favotto

Senior Public Relations & Affairs Officer, Wesley Mission

0428 802 004

jane.favotto@wesleymission.org.au

Media please note: Most people – including media professionals – have been touched by suicide. For many people, the service will be one of mixed emotions. We ask that you respect the privacy of people who are attending and those participating in the service.

For media reporting guidelines on suicide click here.

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