On Saturday 16 September, Foothills Community Care through their Ferntree Gully Community Safety Outreach Project hosted our Ferntree Gully community RU OK? Day family event at the Ferntree Gully CFA.
The event had a real festival atmosphere with many local families and individuals coming along to participate in the various activities on offer including, a petting zoo, face painting, hula-hoop workshops, writing notes for our RUOK? Tree as well as free snags in bread and drinks provided by the Ferntree Gully Rotary Club.
The highlight of the event was the keynote address by Chelsea Frawley from the Danny Frawley Foundation. Chelsea lost her father, Spud Frawley, to suicide four years earlier. While her words were vulnerable and honest as she spoke about her family’s battles with mental health and the toll that this can take, she also offered practical steps forward.
Chelsea’s encouragement was clear and profound, ‘Have the conversation. It’s hard, but mental health needs to be talked about and we need to be better equipped for difficult conversations.’
We are grateful for so many who made this event possible. We thank Chelsea and the Danny Frawley Foundation for her time and words, alongside Daniela De Martino MP State member for Monbulk who spoke to us about the importance of connection and belonging.
We also want to thank Ferntree Gully Rotary for managing the BBQ and Ferntree Gully CFA for making their space available. Thanks also to the many local village traders who contributed goodies for our free show bags for everyone to take away on the day. A great local team effort.
And thanks too for those who attended, we are reminded that when we belong to connected, supportive communities we all benefit and Ferntree Gully is a special place to live.
Finally, as we move on from RUOK? Day events, let’s continue to look out for each other and ask each other if we are ok? Let’s take the time to listen to each other, encourage people to seek further help if needed, and let’s not forget to check back in with each other as well.
The Foothills Community Care – Ferntree Gully Community Safety Outreach Project is a Knox Empowering Communities project funded by the Victorian Government’s Empowering Communities Initiative as part of the Building Safer Communities Program.
Foothills Community Care partners with the Ferntree Gully Community Bendigo Bank.