IT is common to feel alone when going through a tough time, but helping someone admit they are not OK is often the first step to support.
Today is R U OK? Day with the community encouraged to make a connection with family, friends and peers.
The Orange and Region Suicide Prevention Network will host a stall at Orange City Centre today to help provide the community with the tools it needs to approach and help support a friend in need.
Western NSW Local Health District mental health and drug and alcohol, clinical partnerships co-ordinator Meg Simpson has asked the community to come along.
“We’re trying to make a change and bring it to people’s attention,” she said.
“We’ll be trying to give people the tools so they can follow up with people who really aren’t OK so they can get support.”
The event is held during Suicide Prevention Week and she said the stall is a great opportunity to help someone in need.
“Regular connection with family, friends and peers, can help build a stronger and more resilient community, protecting the people we know and love,” she said.
“You don’t have to be an expert to support someone going through a tough time.
“You just need to be there, be able to listen without judgement, and take the time to follow up.
“It’s not about racing in to solve problems, it’s being there to listen.”
Ms Simpson said the community stall will provide practical information and resources to help people ask the R U OK? question.
For more information head to www.ruokday.com or visit the stall today.
A range of groups will be represented at today’s stall and include care and respite services, mental health support, Aboriginal services and drug and alcohol services.
Anyone with concerns about their mental health or that of a friend or loved one should call the mental health line on 1800 011 511 or Lifeline on 13 11 14.