‘The Tour’ is in its second year and will be held on April 22, 2018. It is the brainchild of a group of local cyclists with a passion for their community and the future of its youth. The ride aims to raise community awareness regarding youth mental health, allowing for education and de-stigmatisation of mental illness. Funds raised from the ride go to Blackwood Youth Action, a local not for profit group, to provide counselling to young people across the Warren Blackwood region.
Professor Fiona Stanley AC is a highly respected researcher and advocate for child and adolescent health. The Rotary Club is honoured to have her accept the invitation to take on the position of Patron of the Ride.
Professor Stanley said: “Across Australia, one in four young people will suffer a mental illness this year, with only a quarter of these receiving professional help. Young people in rural Australia do not have access to the same services that their regional and city counterparts do. It is pleasing to see innovative, community driven projects to support young people to get the care that they need.”
“I am excited to support this community initiative, and look forward to cycling some of the hills of scenic Bridgetown”.
Dr Sarah Youngson, Chair of Blackwood Youth Action, said that within the Warren Blackwood region there are significant barriers to youth accessing mental health services. The increased community awareness and funds raised from The Tour of the Blackwood helps to break down a number of these barriers, allowing our young people to get the professional support they deserve.
Bridgetown Rotary Club President, Jacqui Jones, said: “It is a great coup to have Professor Stanley support The Tour. She is a remarkable woman and advocate, and we are proud to have her accept the role of Patron.”