A group of brave Hilltops farmers have stripped off to raise awareness for mental health and suicide rates in rural areas.
The Hilltops Naked Farmer Calendar was produced after finding out the statistics that suicide is 40% higher in rural areas, yet 50% less money is spent on services providing mental health help outside metropolitan areas.
Ellie Burstal is involved with the calendar, “With the drought taking a hold, everyone is beginning to feel the added pressure and therefore pushes issues of mental health to the back of their minds as it’s not important at the moment. This is wrong as it’s times like these when it is usually most important to take the time to sort out issues they might be having before it becomes too late. Talking about mental health issues and suicide has been seen for too long as a sign of weakness. It’s about time we all stood together and showed it takes guts to talk about issues you may be having, similar to the guts it takes to get a naked photo done! So we encourage everyone to ‘take off your hat and have a chat.”
All proceeds made are being donated to a new local safe house for men and youth about to be purchased in Young.
Photographer Chontelle Perrin donated her time and skill to help produce the calendar. The calendars are $20 each and can be purchased either on the website www.hilltopsnakedfarmer.com or in the following local shops: Donges Super IGA, South West Tractors, Delta Ag Young, Stables Day Spa, Powderlys Pumping and Irrigation, Poppas Fudge Factory, Bribbaree Pub, The Long Track Pantry and Gilbert’s Books and Toys.
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