Darkness Into Light now in its 10th year

By Aura McMenamin

The annual Darkness Into Light event launches this Wednesday (March 28) in the Ashtown Visitors Centre in Phoenix Park at 12pm, also marking its tenth year of fundraising for mental health charity Pieta House, reports Aura McMenamin.

Darkness Into Light began in 2008 when 400 people gathered in the Phoenix Park to raise awareness about suicide and self-harm.

darkness into light

A massive turnout at a previous Darkness Into Light event

Over 200,000 people around the world are expected to take part in the now-global event as they walk from darkness at 4.15am into the break of dawn. This year’s 5km walk will take place on Saturday, May 12.

Chairperson of the Phoenix Park committee, Dolores Ronan said: “The Phoenix Park has been incredibly supportive of the event since our first year in 2009.

“Last year, 12,000 people took part from the local community, and we would love to see that go up this year.

Face problems together

“Suicide and self-harm are serious problems in Dublin and we need to face them together.”

Celebrity chef Derry Clarke, whose own family experienced a personal tragedy in 2013, will host the event next Wednesday.

Speaking on the importance of the event, Pieta House CEO, Brian Higgins, said: “I want to ask everybody to wake up and join us in support of families and friends affected by suicide and self-harm. All of our services are free, but the demand for them is ever-increasing. We all need to wake up to the stigmas that lead people to self-harm and into suicidal crisis, and to the doors of Pieta House.”

Pieta House are this year expected to bring back their services to Tallaght by opening a new base on the Greenhills Road.

Registration for this year’s event is opening on March 22nd and will be exclusively online at the Darkness Into Light website.

Community registration events will take place closer to the date. Updates can be found on the Darkness Into Light Phoenix Park Facebook page.

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