LOCAL South West Rocks Marlins player Tony Duncan along with the South West Rocks community raised $40,000 towards awareness of mental health, suicide and depression on Saturday.
In an issue that is personally close to Mr Duncan’s heart, raising awareness around mental health issues within the community is a goal that he truly kicked on the weekend
“We managed to raise $40,000 and create a lot of awareness and the support from the community was overwhelming,” Duncan said.
“I’m very passionate about mental health, suicide awareness and depression and for the community to come out and support a very difficult issue and one that is even more difficult to talk about was fantastic.
“The money is going to contribute to saving lives in the future but the awareness we created and just to get people talking about mental health, depression and suicide was priceless.”
Duncan said he raised the money within the community through his love of rugby league and playing with the Marlins at South West Rocks.
“Throughout the year I accumulated one dollar for every hit-up and tackle I made during the season with the Marlins,” he said.
“I have been raising money through mental health and suicide prevention charity group Livin who have the motto ‘It ain’t weak to speak’ which is very appropriate and appealing to people.
“Businesses sponsored me and overall I had more than 60 sponsors which included 32 sponsors who supported my own personal fundraiser Dunc’s Dollars for Depression.
“Dunc’s Dollars for Depression raised $15,000 and the charity auction and donations from the community raised another $25,000 which was fantastic and completely unexpected.”
Duncan said he will continue to raise awareness about mental health, suicide and depression and he is currently in talks with Livin who have recognised his efforts and have floated the idea of Duncan becoming an ambassador for Livin on the Mid North Coast.
“I’m currently in talks with Livin about coming on board as an ambassador to represent the Mid North Coast Region,” Duncan said.
“Any which way I’ll continue to raise awareness about mental health, suicide and depression within the community but for now I would just like to thank everyone involved and everyone that contributed to the cause.”
For more pictures of the big day go to the Macleay Argus website galleries.