The people of Longford and the four corners of the globe played their part in ensuring that this morning's Darkness Into Light – Pieta House’s flagship awareness walk/run supported by Electric Ireland - was a record breaker as more than 150,000 people took part in the iconic event.
The Darkness Into Light Longford organising committee were absolutely thrilled with the huge number of participants that gathered in The Mall (Albert Reynolds Peace Park) this morning for the 4.15am start to the 5km event and spread the message of 'Hope'.
The committee posted on their Facebook page, "Massive thank you to everyone that helped out this morning and to our very loyal supporters and sponsor ... you have made 2017 another great success for us all - very best wishes from DIL Longford committee x."
And as you can see from this selection of photos, courtesy of the Darkness Into Light Longford Facebook page and also of Seamus Kiernan from Longford Civil Defence, the fourth Longford DIL was a massive success, and it has been going from strength to strength since the first Longford DIL in 2014.
The photo frames for selfies and social media snaps also proved a big hit with DIL participants and these were sponsored by Nally Bros Hyundai in Ballymahon.
Since it began in one venue - the Phoenix Park in Dublin in 2009 – Darkness Into Light has grown into a global movement against suicide.
Funds raised help to keep Pieta House counselling services free to those in suicidal crisis, people who engage in self-harm and those bereaved by suicide.
In Ireland, almost 500 people die by suicide each year; that’s ten deaths per week. Pieta House and Electric Ireland have asked the people of Ireland to wake up to this alarming issue.
Pieta House CEO, Brian Higgins said, “For anyone who may be suffering, who may have suicidal ideation or is engaging in self-harm, or if they feel isolated, Darkness Into Light is this phenomenal and very visible sign and gesture that your community is there to support you.
“The generosity of people who support Pieta House is incredible. It’s that whole ‘pass it on’ mentality, where people give generously for someone else’s therapy and to allow us to keep it free for everyone. None of us knows whether or when we’ll need that help or not.
“Darkness Into Light brings in about a third of our annual income and helps keep our doors open. The funds allow us to serve people better.”
See Wednesday's Longford Leader for photo special by Shelley Corcoran from the 2017 Darkness Into Light Longford and again congratulations and well done to everyone that took part !!