Limerick woman’s campaign for suicide support centre

Jennifer Purcell

Reporter:

Jennifer Purcell

Kelly McCarthy, holding a photo of her cousin, who was just 15 when she took her own life
A young mother of two from Limerick has begun a fundraising campaign to set up a centre for those affected by suicide.

A young mother of two from Limerick has begun a fundraising campaign to set up a centre for those affected by suicide.

Kelly McCarthy, 22, from Ballinacurra Weston, was inspired to pursue the idea in part due to the death of her own cousin, who was just 15 when she took her own life.

“When I was doing my Leaving Cert, I did a project on suicide and found it very interesting, but then my cousin died that July,” Kelly told the Limerick Leader.

The young city woman believes something needs to be done to deal with the fallout arising from suicide across Limerick.

“With the amount of suicides and people jumping into that river, I thought to myself, someone needs to do something.”

Having got the support of two community workers in her area, Kelly decided she wanted to open a drop-in centre for those affected by suicide and those who may be depressed or down and need someone to talk to.

“Once a month I hope to have a counsellor up for under-age counselling so we can cover everyone, of all ages and backgrounds.”

There are plans to start the service in September and run for one or two days a week to begin with, then depending on how frequently the service is used, to expand it if necessary.

“We hope to get some counsellors who will donate their time to us, we have a counsellor in the centre that offers her service for €10, so we hope to get her on board,” said Kelly.

“Everyone knows someone who has died by suicide, it’s not talked about enough. If someone dies in a car crash, its on the news, if someone famous commits suicide, they’re on the news, if your not famous, you’re nobody.”

With over €300 already raised for the centre through a fancy dress walk, the next fundraiser will be a soccer tournament which will take place in Pike Rovers with the date to be confirmed.

The event will be organised with the help of Laura Hughes, who works with the FAI. It will be run as a six-a-side tournament that will cost €35 per team with all proceeds going towards the centre.