Hundreds of local people had an early start at the weekend as they gathered to take part in Darkness Into Light events across the region.
Large turnouts were reported in Derry and in Inishowen, where over 1,000 people took part in dawn walks in Buncrana and Carndonagh on Saturday.
Organisers of the local events in Derry and Donegal said they were delighted with the support shown on Saturday. A spokesperson for the Derry event organisers said: “The Darkness Into Light Committee were overwhelmed at the turnout to Derry’s third Darkness Into Light walk/run. It was great to see that hundreds of people made the huge effort to ‘Wake up and walk with us’. Everyone was there for the same reason: to help raise awareness around the impact of suicide, self-harm and mental health.
“Electric Ireland are the sponsors of the event, which is also to raise funds for local charity HURT (Have Your Tomorrows), which is an organisation who help people with alcohol and drug addictions and their families, and Pieta House, which is a crisis centre for suicide and self-harm. They have a centre in Letterkenny which serves the North West area.”
Among those who supported the event were Derry Girls actress Jamie-Lee O’Donnell and Dungiven star Eoghan Quigg, who along with Q Radio was doing a walk about, talking to participants.
And the feedback from the event has been very positive.
One participant said: “I just wanted to say what a lovely event this was, very symbolic and moving and for such a good cause. I hope to be there next year too.”