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June 2015 Newsletter

Thank you for subscribing to our newsletter and staying in touch! There is a lot going on with WINGS of Hope projects well underway and more news in stall. Our Acting President, Wendy McWilliam was appointed in November last year and is currently soaring through a major campaign to place copies of Red Chocolate Elephants in the Riverina (NSW) region this week.

Our project coordinator, Jodie Streckeisen has been with us for a year now – so congratulations Jodie and our sincere thanks for all of your tireless efforts and detailed work. Without you, we would not be able to implement our projects and Wendy wouldn’t be able to ship all those copies of RCE to the Riverina. 

James Baudzus has recently accepted a position of grant coordinator and has been a huge help in achieving success with the St George Foundation grant. 

Thank you to Leigh for her everlasting enthusiasm and marketing expertise with our projects. Lastly thank you to Steph for her generous commitment to our administration, secretarial role and record keeping.

Watch out for the links to be placed on our Facebook page and website so you can listen to Wendy speaking with the ABC Riverina and Radio National.

We look forward to sharing events, fundraising ideas and new projects we have planned for the year. 

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Riverina Families Bereaved by Suicide to Receive Red Chocolate Elephants Support

It’s difficult to measure the social impact of the worst drought in modern times, but with the rate of suicide being 50% higher in regional communities than in others, it is essential that regional communities are provided with resources to strengthen families.

As a child growing up in Beelbangera, just outside of Griffith, Wendy saw families in her community experience the highs and lows of life on the land and knew of others touched by suicide. Even tight-knit communities can find it hard to talk about health and wellbeing, especially with this type of death.

In 2004, the lives of Wendy and her family were devastated overnight by the loss of her mum, Faye McWilliam, who took her own life.

“I was 26 years old at the time and it was sudden and unexpected when mum died. Over the years afterwards, we tried to navigate through our grief, and I gained an understanding of the importance of being able to access help.” 

Suicide bereavement is an intense form of grief which can be complicated and contagion presents the risk of further suicide amongst the bereaved. Today Wendy heads up WINGS of Hope Inc, a registered harm prevention charity providing supports and resources to people bereaved by suicide.

As Acting President of WINGS of Hope, Wendy is pleased to announce the support of the St George Foundation.

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Congratulations Tim on your amazing run and fundraising efforts

On Sunday 17th May Tim Dare took on the great ocean road and achieved not only an amazing marathon time but big things for his local community. He has currently raised $6200 and is still going strong. This amount will supply over 100 copies of our educational resource Red Chocolate Elephants: For Children Bereaved by Suicide to local schools and community groups around Colac in Victoria. 

You can read more about his story and can still donate: 

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Sydney Colour Run - the happiest 5km on the planet!

Nexia fundraising for WINGS of Hope - Sunday 8th February was a fantastic day for Nexia to participate in the Colour Run Sydney event, the "happiest 5km on the planet”, which it was in every way. The sun was shining, the music was pumping and the crowd was amazing at Cathy Freeman Park in Homebush. The Nexia walkers/runners were happy to start the run in their pristine white T-shirts but when they emerged at the other end they were smiling even more in their rainbow coloured T-shirts!

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Supporter Profile - Liz Dunn

How did you come to know WINGS of Hope? 

Nexia Court & Co have broken down their CSR calendar into quarters.  Amanda and I were given the focus of mental health.   When researching who we would like to support, it was important to us to find an organisation that supported those that are sometimes overlooked in the mental health area. We wanted to find someone who’s prime focus was on reaching and supporting as many people as possible.

As a survivor of Suicide, it was particularly important to me to find an organisation that was personal and that cared for their members.  Losing my 17 year old sister 12 years ago was one of the toughest things I have experienced. Being the eldest, I felt that I had to be the strong one. My parents had lost a child and my 13 year old youngest sister, had found her.  There was support for my parents available, through support groups. However, finding tools or assistance for a bereaved 13 year old dealing with anxiety and grief, was extremely hard.

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