Aine Harte with her son Daniel Souter taking part in the Tullamore Darkness Into Light 5km in Aid of Pieta House in 2019
With only days to go to this year’s Darkness Into Light, proudly supported by Electric Ireland, people across the country are getting ready to share One Sunrise Together on May 8th. Pieta and Electric Ireland are continuing to invite people to sign up at www.darknessintolight.ie and to take part in any way they can – walking, running, swimming, biking or simply sharing this special sunrise moment that can unite us all whilst still staying physically apart.
Due to Covid-19 guidelines, there are no organised walks this year, but these activities, carried out within Covid-19 guidelines, will help shine a light on suicide and self-harm, raising vital funds for Pieta’s suicide prevention and bereavement services. With over 22,848 calls and texts placed to Pieta’s free crisis line so far this year, support is vital to ensure this service remains freely available to everyone 24/7.
Four out of ten people who accessed Pieta’s services in 2020 cited loneliness as a trigger for their reaching out, so this year’s Darkness Into Light is about much more than raising funds; it’s about helping people feel connected. By taking part and sharing one sunrise together participants are showing solidarity with those who are feeling isolated in these difficult times. We may be physically apart again this year, but we can unite under the sunrise and share in its light and warmth together. So, this year Pieta together with Electric Ireland are asking the nation to experience ‘One Sunrise Together’, the very same sunrise that gives hope to those impacted by suicide every year.
Speaking about this year’s Darkness into Light, Emma Dolan, Pieta Clinical Director, said; “Pieta is aiming to unite over 200,000 participants under one sunrise this year. The absence of organised walks means many of our supporters can’t gather with their loved ones and will miss the solidarity of a group walk. Knowing others across the country are watching the sunrise together will bring comfort, a feeling of belonging to something bigger and being connected to others. It's more important than ever to help participants feel united this year and sharing a sunrise moment will do that.”
Marguerite Sayers, Executive Director at Electric Ireland added; “Every year, so many of our customers and staff join thousands of others across Ireland in solidarity to offer hope to, and raise vital funds for, those impacted by suicide and self-harm. Although we remain physically apart this year, we can all still experience that moment of hope by sharing a special sunrise on May 8th. Pieta’s commitment continues to inspire us all; in a year when generating hope has been more important than ever, we are proud at Electric Ireland to support Darkness Into Light for the ninth year. We would like to thank those who have already shown their support and encourage everyone else to sign up and get involved in any way they can next Saturday.”
Darkness Into Light creates a safe space for those impacted by suicide to grieve and to feel connected with those who have also lost loved ones in this country and around the world – Darkness Into Light now being a global event. It has long been proven that music is a great connector and source of comfort which can reach into our emotions and make memories feel real, particularly during challenging times. Listening to a favourite song while taking part in Darkness Into Light this year may help direct emotions, access happy memories and help us feel connected to loved ones.
Mary Black, Pieta Ambassador and musician opened up about her experiences of postnatal depression on the Darkness into Light Late Late Show Special last year. She wants to remind people “there is light at the end of the tunnel”. It was only after seeking help that Mary, who is also mum to Conor, Danny and Roisin, found she could be happy and smile again. “Pieta’s 24/7 Crisis Helpline is there to help anybody impacted or concerned about suicide or self-harm. Asking for help is one of the bravest things you can do and I would encourage anybody who needs it to seek help early” said Mary.
Mary and fellow Pieta ambassador, Louise Cooney, have curated special playlists for Pieta’s Darkness into Light walk. You can find and listen to their playlists on May 8th via Pieta’s Spotify, or search ‘Darkness Into Light 2021 - Sunrise Playlist’ on Spotify.
Sign up at darknessintolight.ie and share one sunrise together with the thousands already signed up. Pieta are urging the public to practice social distancing and adhere to Covid-19 guidelines to ensure the safety of all participants. Get involved with Darkness Into Light by walking, running, swimming, hiking, biking or simply sharing your sunrise snap using the hashtags, #BrighterTogether, #DIL2021. Because under one sunrise, we’re brighter together. Sign up now at www.darknessintolight.ie
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