Trekkers hit the Fleurieu for mental health awareness

Mental health in mind: Coastrek ambassador and Victor Harbor Mayor, Moira Jenkins and her Ridgeback Xena are gearing up for next week's charity walk.
Mental health in mind: Coastrek ambassador and Victor Harbor Mayor, Moira Jenkins and her Ridgeback Xena are gearing up for next week's charity walk.

More than 1300 people will make their way along the Fleurieu next Friday, as part of the 2019 Coastrek event, which aims to raise $1 million for Beyond Blue.

The national event which began in Sydney in 2009, has so far seen 40,000 trekkers raise nearly $35 million for charity.

The sold out Adelaide leg of the event will see teams of four make their way along the Fleurieu coastline for up to 18 hours.

Two distances are on offer with a 60km trek from Parsons Beach beginning at 6:00am and a 30km trek beginning in Victor Harbor at 9:30am, before both walks finish in Goolwa.

City of Victor Harbor Mayor Moira Jenkins is a proud Coastrek ambassador and said she was keenly anticipating the event, which shines a light on mental health issues.

"Mental health is a really important issue that we need to look at, with suicide being the leading cause of death for young people in Australia," she said.

"Anything that we can do to promote good mental health and support groups that provide mental health services is important, and Beyond Blue do a fantastic job."

Dr Jenkins said mental health was a serious concern for the wider Victor Harbor community, and the event was an important vehicle for raising awareness and starting discussion.

"Everybody in Victor Harbor has been impacted by mental health issues, whether that's themselves personally or whether that's a loved one or a friend; everybody is impacted in some way," she said.

"Most people in the community would also know someone who has taken their own life as a result of mental health struggles, so it's a really important community issue as well as an individual issue."

A big show of support is expected as trekkers pass through Victor Harbor as well as Port Elliot and Middleton on their way to Goolwa.

"I'm grateful that the Victor Harbor community has got behind Coastrek," said Dr Jenkins.

"It's going to be a fabulous day for a great cause, with over a thousand people coming down to the Fleurieu and it's going to be a very fun atmosphere for a very serious cause."

Beyond Blue is one of Australia's top mental health charities, and aims to improve the lives of individuals, families, and communities.

Mental health professionals are available 24/7 on the Beyond Blue Support Service by calling 1300 22 4636, and through web chat and email at beyondblue.org.au