Ozautoelectrics lights the way for men's mental health
MEN are often the worst about speaking up about their mental health and it's a problem that Andrew Trevaskis desperately wants to see change.
On Wednesday, February 13, the Ozautoelectrics general manager will help break the stigma surrounding men's mental health and suicide prevention by hosting the Bring Light into Your Life promotion.
Globes in cars that need to be swapped or fixed can be changed in exchange for a gold coin donation, with proceeds going to mental health awareness group Fraser Coast Mates.
Andrew has seen first hand the devastation that can come from mental health issues, after his friend and community stalwart Geoff Redpath tragically took his life two years ago.
Fraser Coast Mates was formed in Geoff's honour.
"I don't think people realise how many men out there actually do suffer from this kind of thing," Andrew said.
"It really goes largely unannounced that blokes kind of swallow it down and hold their pride high which is part of the problem.
"I think it's a very important work that Fraser Coast Mates are doing...to get mates talking to each other."
Andrew has been working with some of his major suppliers, including Bosch Automotive, to provide 300 car globe replacements.
Todd Sendall from Loyalty Auto Electrix has also volunteered his time to help out on the day.
"If you have a globe that's out or blown don't drive around in the dark - come down and get it swapped over. The day is all about raising awareness. Fraser Coast Mates will be there to have a chat to people about what the organisation is all about, even if you don't have a blown globe.
"There must be plenty of girlfriends and wives out there who are aware that their husbands and partners are too proud to talk to Fraser Coast Mates - come down and grab a flyer and spread the word."
Fraser Coast Mates president Darren Bosley congratulates organisations such as Ozautoelectrics in finding opportunities to start conversations.
He said recent statistics released by Queensland Health showed that suicide is the leading cause of death for Queenslanders aged 15-44 years of age.
"Asking the question if someone is OK seems so simple yet we all admit we don't do this enough," Mr Bosley said.
That's where the local organisation can help.
"Fraser Coast Mates aims to build local awareness and conversations about mental health issues, bridge the gap between support services and ultimately make progress for suicide prevention.
"The goal is to encourage 'mates' to be better equipped to help their friends and colleagues in times of need," he said.
The promotion will run from 9am to 1pm at Unit 5, 102 Islander Rd, Pialba.
If you need help call Lifeline on 13 11 14.