Love, support and hope - all three come together at a walk for an issue close to many people's hearts.
The Rotorua HopeWalk is an annual event held to bring about greater awareness of the issues of depression and suicide, and to promote suicide prevention.
The HopeWalk Suicide Prevention Movement is a charitable trust that holds suicide awareness/prevention events and projects like HopeWalk, Lights 4 Lives, and Link 4 Life.
It is a grassroots movement of hope for those who have been affected by suicide, and works together with other like-minded organisations and community groups to provide a platform for suicide prevention.
Co-organiser Brena Johnston says the Rotorua HopeWalk has been held three times previously, but last year's couldn't go ahead due to lockdown.
"It is to unite people like ourselves who have been through the loss of loved ones and to connect us with others suffering the grief brought on by suicide."
She says they would love to get more professionals such as mental health workers involved, helping to share the message that not being okay was okay.
She says she herself and co-organiser Elaina Hargreaves had only one session with a support person after having family members commit suicide - "so we want to show there are people to help if you need it".
"It's okay not to be okay, and we need to make it a society where people feel safe to say how they are feeling, and not be embarrassed or ashamed. We all have issues."
Christine Tomasevich says the HopeWalk is important because it gives support and encouragement to families who have lost someone.
"We are not counsellors or specialists, we are just here to lend support and we've been through it one way or another."
Christine says she has lost five loved ones to suicide since 1974.
"It's my way of showing support to my family, by being involved in this [HopeWalk] and bringing it to the attention of people."
She says a great and relevant quote is one by Stephen Hawking - "Mankind's greatest achievements have come about by talking and its greatest failures by not talking."
For the Rotorua HopeWalk, people can turn up on the day, it's free of charge, and is an organised walk where attendees will walk behind a banner.
The event is excited to have a group of this year's Miss Rotorua contestants on board and supporting the kaupapa.
- What: HopeWalk Rotorua
- When: Saturday, September 11, 2.30pm to 4.30pm
- Where: Opposite Lady Jane's on the Village Green