Firefighters are known for being tough but three members of the Willunga Country Fire Service aim to make a statement this September when they travel to Melbourne to climb the 28 floors of the Crown Metropol Hotel – while wearing 25kg of structure firefighting gear, which includes Breathing Apparatus and Dräger cylinders.
On Saturday, September 1, Kylie Geary, Rick Ewins and Courtney Orrin will be in Melbourne to take on the annual event and raise funds to ‘step up to fight depression, PTSD and suicide’.
Kylie Geary who has been a member of the Willunga CFS since November 2017 said that after being part of the crew which helped last years firefighters complete the climb and inspired by her partner, Rick who has been in the CFS for 20 years, she could not help but to become more involved.
"My main drive for participating in this climb is for the cause itself, it's not only for raising awareness and funds for mental health, but it's very personal and close to my heart."
Kylie’s role with Willunga CFS is that of the Cadet Coordinator and has helped develop the cadet program there from scratch, giving kids in the area a way to become involved with the CFS.
Courtney who has been a member of the CFS for five years has already exceeded her fundraising goal of $1,000.
This year the fundraising goal of the stairclimb $700,000 for donation to Lifelife and the Black Dog Institute, as of Tuesday, August 28, funds sat at $356,861.
firefighterclimb.org.au revealed the following mental health statistics:
- 3 million Australians are living with depression and anxiety
- 1 in 4 Australians will suffer from a mental illness in their lifetime
- Suicide is the leading cause of death for Australians aged between 15 and 44
- 3,000 Australians die by suicide every year, an average of eight people every day.