By Evelyn Leckie

A volunteer grant for the Mitchell Shire Suicide Prevention Network will help the group run more effective courses on suicide prevention.

The network exists to help people recognise in others, the needs they have and to talk to them so they may be referred to the correct places.

Member for McEwan Rob Mitchell handed over the $2,050 grant to the network on Friday saying it was an important service.

“We know the importance of the work that’s being done by the volunteers and how they’re helping build a stronger and more resilient community that we live in,” he said.

The grant was given to help purchase ‘chatterbox’ devices – a device that clips to the speaker’s belt and conveys sound to walking groups who could be standing up to 50 metres away.

The device assists with the network’s outdoor sessions.

“One of the issues that’s being raised is the inability to deliver mental health workshops across the region because not all the halls and public spaces are available,” Mr Mitchell said.

“The grant will help supply amplifier equipment to take those mental health workshops anywhere across Mitchell Shire and deliver this worthwhile service.”

Network chairperson Nikki Simos said the group were excited to receive the volunteer grant.

“We’re a small volunteer group and we provide a medium of contacts that we’re affiliated with to let people know this is who we are – supporting and advocating to reduce the stigma of suicide,” she said.

Volunteer Roslyn Stewart, who applied for the grant, said the network was all about educating the community and the grant would help with projecting educational courses.