A fundraising run to save lives scheduled to occur on the Great Ocean Road has now been shifted to take place from Yalboroo State School to Mount Charlton State School on Sunday, August 23.

Phoebe Fatnowna and Rhys Spanswick were set to run the annual 44-kilometre Great Ocean Road Marathon but things were de-railed, thanks to the pandemic.

Grapevine Group president Debbie Knight said this is a great opportunity for locals to donate locally.

“We are thrilled the run is going ahead and the only difference is that instead of being held in Victoria, it’s moved to our backyard,” Ms Knight said.

“That Phoebe and Rhys are willing to run 44 kilometres for this fundraiser is so generous of them – all the funds they raise will mean more free life-saving safeTALK suicide prevention training and other vital initiatives for the Mackay community.”

Phoebe and Rhys are locals who wanted to give back to the community.

“This cause is important because suicide is often preventable,” Ms Fatnowna said.

“If we know what the cues are, we might be able stop people from taking their lives and the money we’re raising will help Grapevine educate people to prevent that.”

Removing some of the stereotypes associated with suicide is also very important to these two.

“A charity that aims to eliminate the stigma, as well as provide free and accessible training to raise awareness on the topic of suicide so it can be more openly discussed within the community, is critical,” Mr Spanwick said.

The fundraising target is $5000 and so far they have raised a little over half that amount – they need the community’s support to reach the total.

Every donation, $2 and over, will be issued a tax-deductible receipt.

Afterwards Rhys and Phoebe will be at the Ocean International from 3pm to 5.30pm and the community is encouraged to drop in, give them their congratulations, find out about safeTALK and perhaps donate.

You can also donate online to the marathon fundraiser by going to https://hub.benojo.com/campaigns/great-ocean-road-marathon-fundraiser

If you would like to know more about Grapevine Group or sign up for free safeTALK suicide prevention training visit www.grapevinegroup.org.au