Goomalling asks the question; R U OK?

Country Chemist Goomalling pharmacist Mark Ashton and Goomalling Community Resource Centre manager Loretta Johnston.
Country Chemist Goomalling pharmacist Mark Ashton and Goomalling Community Resource Centre manager Loretta Johnston.

Goomalling businesses have teamed up to ask the all important question; R U OK?

Country Chemist Goomalling pharmacist Mark Ashton has organised an event in the town following a number of tragedies that he said has broken the community.

“I’ve been wanting to do something for a while,” said Mr Ashton.

“We’ve had a few significant events in Goomalling.

“We had a young bloke take his own life, we’ve had an infant death and another young bloke have a motorcycle accident.

“I wanted to do something to bring mental health to the forefront ultimately to make sure everyone is okay.”

On the night of Thursday, September 13 those from Goomalling and surrounds are encouraged to meeting at the Goomalling Sports and Community Centre for drinks, free food and a talk from Regional Men’s Health.

A photo shoot will also take place to create a 2019 calendar with funds raised going to R U OK?

Goomalling Community Resource Centre manager Loretta Johnston has been assisting Mr Ashton with the organisation of the event.

“At the CRC we have bought some merchandise sponsored by Mark,” Ms Johnston said.

“We hope to have a great array of photos out of it so we will create a calendar next year and the profits from that will go to R U OK Day.

“I’ll be going to the Jennacubbine CWA’s 85th Birthday on Monday so I’ll go down with some t-shirts and signs to get them involved in the photo shoot.

“Our trainee is in the netball grand final in Wongan Hills so t-shirts and signs will be going up there and also the hockey girls have their wind up this weekend and are getting involved.

“It’s definitely not just for the guys.”

Mr Ashton said the primary goal of the event is to generate conversation. 

“People are scared to ask someone if they’re okay just in case they say no,” he said.

“This will be a bit of an education to the broader community.

“We want to equip the community to ask how each other is going.

“It’s about breaking down that blokey-bloke character of pushing through it.

“Our job as a community is provide that space if people want to and need to have a talk.”

Ms Johnston said there are people in the community ready to listen.

“Especially with the CRCs that’s a huge part of what we do, keep our community strong and to keep it growing,” she said.

“We have a vested interest in this.

“If people come in and need a cuppa and a chat we’ll do that.

“If I don’t know something I’ll find out where to go.

“We can certainly point people in a direction.”

Head down to the Goomalling Sports and Community Centre on Thursday from 5pm to join the conversation.