A bereaved father who is campaigning to have suicide prevention taught in the classroom has praised a school’s fundraising event.

Students from Wellington School in Timperley took part in a sponsored walk which has helped to raise more than £18,000 for the national charity PAPYRUS Prevention of Young Suicide.

Mike Palmer from Sale, who lost his 17-year-old daughter Beth to suicide in 2020, said he was proud and delighted to have been invited to start the walk.

“Suicide is the biggest killer of young people in the UK and the number of teenagers who take their own lives continues to rise. The fact that these students chose to do something about it, to help raise awareness and help PAPYRUS to save lives, is absolutely fantastic,” said Mike.

As one of the famous 3 Dads Walking, Mr Palmer has helped to raise more than a million pounds for the charity. The three bereaved fathers also organised an online petition which prompted a parliamentary debate on suicide prevention being included in the national curriculum.

Wellington School’s Assistant Headteacher, Louise Stephens, said the School Council voted overwhelmingly to raise money in support of suicide prevention.

“Wellington always likes to nominate charities that are both local and directly impact upon the lives of young people.

“This year’s chosen charity is a reflection and acknowledgement of the significance of mental health related issues both in education and more broadly in society and the vital nature of offering appropriate support to young people,” she said.

Every school year supported the event with some students going the extra mile by wearing fancy dress.

In addition to their six-mile sponsored walk, students also raised money by having a non-uniform day.

Over the past 23 years Wellington School has raised £535,000 for various charities.

For practical, confidential suicide prevention help and advice please contact PAPYRUS HOPELINE247 on 0800 068 4141, text 88247 or email pat@papyrus-uk.org

* This is a press release published 14 March 2023.
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