Pesel & Carr helps launch youth suicide prevention initiative

Pesel & Carr has teamed up with the Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation (ASPF) to develop and launch the “You are not alone” competition – which has support from a number of Australian A-listers including filmmaker Gillian Armstrong.

Targeted at Victorian secondary and tertiary students, the initiative aims to spread messages of help and care, and support the fight against suicide – the biggest killer of young Australians.

High school and university students joined Minister for Mental Health the Hon. Martin Foley MP and ASPF representatives, to officially launch the competition at Albert Park College today.


Lights. Camera. Action – by Mr Foley

“We’ll continue working with organisations like the Australian Suicide Prevention Foundation to make sure young people know they’re not alone and that there is always hope,” Mr Foley said.

From 16 July to 9 October, entrants working individually or in groups will flex their creative muscles and create 60-second videos with the theme “You are not alone”.

Competition entrants won’t only have the opportunity to contribute to a good cause but will share in a prize pool of $15,000.

Founder and board member of ASPF and psychiatrist, Dr David Horgan, said videos created by young people for young people had the potential to cut through in circumstances where concerned parents and teachers struggled.

“The online world can be such a damaging place when you’re a teenager and trying to find your identity amidst self-doubt and the struggles of fitting in. We believe these videos will shine a light in the darkness, and provide hope.”

The initiative has been launched at a time when youth suicide has reached a ten-year high in Australia according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics. Suicide is responsible for the loss of about eight young lives per week – more than those killed in car crashes.


Albert Park College captains Nick & Bella, Dr David Horgan, RMIT university student Rebecca Giarrusso, Minister Martin Foley, ASPF chair Michael Cassar and board member John Hardy

We are also proud to announce support from the entertainment industry and wider community.

Presented by Village Roadshow, the competition has the backing of a number of prominent Australian ambassadors including Alison Wonderland (DJ and Coachella star), Ben Harvey and Liam Stapleton (Triple J radio hosts and comedians) and Monique Conti (dual code athlete for WNBL and AFLW) with more to be announced.

In addition award-winning Australian Director, Gillian Armstrong, has joined the judging panel.

Ambassador, comedian and radio host, Liam Stapleton said the issue was close to his heart, and that of co-host and fellow ambassador Ben Harvey.

“The ‘You are not alone’ campaign is extremely important; those four words can save lives. I have loved ones who battle with mental health issues daily. I’ve been lucky enough to have people around me who I trust and I can talk to,” said Liam.


Ben Harvey & Liam Stapleton, Triple J breakfast hosts

ASPF is a nationwide not-for-profit focused on providing an outlet for those considering suicide, and their friends and relatives affected by such an event.

Know a tertiary or secondary student that may be interested in participating? Or would you like to submit an entry? Follow the Facebook page @youarenotalonecomp to stay up-to-date with all the competition details.