A market day fundraiser is being organised by Taranaki R.A.T.S to raise money for Youthline.

The fundraiser is in Stratford next month and will feature market stalls, food stalls, face painting, a motorcycle show and shine, raffles and auction. Event co-ordinator Pauline Webby says the day will raise money for Youthline Taranaki and support suicide prevention — an important issue to talk about.

Youthline works with young people and their families to ensure they know where to get help and can access support. It is made up of volunteer and paid staff members and has centres based across the country.

Taranaki does not have a centre and the closest one is in Palmerston North.

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"To get enough money to have somebody co-ordinate it from here would be great."
Pauline says raising awareness around suicide is close to her heart.

"We have had a lot of biker friends who have lost family and children and we really want to try and do something to raise awareness. The face doesn't show anything — people are bright and bubbly — it's just saying to people we are here to talk."

Youthline is not funded by the Government and relies on grants and donations. The R.A.T.S charitable trust has formed a committee chaired by Nigel Scott, based in Inglewood, and is working with other Taranaki organisations to help spread the word about suicide prevention.

The trust has helped educate ambassadors at Stratford , Waitara and Opunake high schools who can help other students who need help.

"They are there to talk to other students in the case of bullying — it's trying to get to that stage before suicide takes over."

There have been 668 suicides in New Zealand so far this year, 62 more than last year. Two people have committed suicide in Taranaki over the last two weeks.

The Taranaki R.A.T.S market day fundraiser is on October 21 in Stratford on Miranda Street. If you are worried about your or someone else's mental health, get help from your GP or local mental health provider.

WHERE TO GET HELP:

To talk to someone else:
Lifeline: 0800543354 (available 24/7)
Suicide Crisis Helpline: 0508828865 (0508 TAUTOKO) (available 24/7)
Youthline: 0800376633
Need to talk? Free call or text 1737 (available 24/7)
Kidsline: 0800543754 (available 24/7)
Whatsup: 08009428787 (1-11pm)
Depression helpline: 0800111757 (available 24/7)
Rainbow Youth: 093764155
Samaritans 0800726666
Rural Support Trust: 0800787254