By Abbey Cannan
A free family fun day raising awareness and providing help for those living with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) will be held in Noosa on Saturday 20 November.
Independent marquees with representatives from an array of Noosa’s dedicated health service providers will be available to help you create your own pathway to mental fitness.
The event will feature PTSD Dogs, chair yoga, Tai Chi, interviews, entertainment by the SandFlys and a free sausage sizzle.
This initiative is a joint project of Noosa’s five Rotary Clubs; Noosa Heads, Noosa Daybreak, Noosa, Cooroy and Eumundi.
Rotary Club Noosa Heads member Bob Birkhead said attendees could chat with up to 16 service providers for their own plan for PTSD support.
“The great part has been watching the way the five Rotary clubs have all collaborated on this event together,“ Mr Birkhead said.
“We intend to make this an annual event. If this works, this could very easily be a transportable hub that could be applied to other Rotary clubs around Australia.
“We’ve spoken with a lot of people and we’ve been amazed at the positive feedback. The spirit of the Noosa community is going to rise off something like this.“
Mr Birkhead said most people had been through some type of trauma throughout their life.
“We’ve all got a story to tell. If you’ve got an issue, you don’t have to think you’re alone. Come and get help,“ he said.
Noosa Mayor Clare Stewart said the collaboration typified the ongoing community spirit of Noosa’s community.
“It is so heart-warming to see five local Rotary clubs work together to initiate this type of event,” she said.
“Council continues to deliver its highly successful Connecting Noosa program, which aims to improve the health and wellbeing of our residents and this community event is vital to building resilience in the community,” Cr Stewart said.
Cr Stewart said the Rotary Clubs should be congratulated for organising an important event.
“It really complements similar work Council delivers such as the Mental Health First Aid courses for community volunteers,” she said.
“Community-led solutions are so important and this day is about showing you are not alone in this.
“I encourage all residents and visitors to come along and make the most of what’s available,” she said.
Cr Stewart said Rotary was the lifeblood of the community and continued to make a tangible difference to Noosa.
Noosa MP Sandy Bolton said PTSD was often a hidden affliction affecting members of our community.
“Early intervention and support are essential, and it’s wonderful that five of our local Rotary Clubs plus one Lions Club are collaborating to facilitate this event, Beautiful Day by the River,“ Ms Bolton said.
“The concept was presented to me by the Rotary Club of Noosa Heads where the impacts of lengthy delays between PTSD diagnosis and specialist appointments are profound in the mental fitness realm and cannot be underestimated.
“If anyone you know has been affected by PTSD, please come along to Noosaville Lions Park on Saturday 20 November from 11am to 3pm.
“You will be able to access the help that you need as well as take part in therapy exercises, chat with service providers and meet the fabulous PTSD Dog team.“
The initiative is being supported by Noosa Mayor Clare Stewart, Noosa MP Sandy Bolton, Wide Bay MP Llew O’Brien, State Emergency Service (SES), Qld Police Service, Qld Ambulance Service, and Queensland Fire and Emergency Service.