LIVIN is a part of a greater movement that, along with other organisations, aims to spread the message about the importance of understanding mental health issues and providing resources to deal with them. A part of this ‘community’ is the powerful message stemming from the annual ‘R U OK?’ Day on the 14th of September.
The organisation was started by Sydney advertising executive, Gavin Larkin, who after losing his own father to suicide, was concerned that he was heading down the same path after suffering from mental health issues. The R U OK? Organisation was founded in 2009 to start the conversation with friends, family, work colleagues, team members and open the door to those who may be suffering in silence. Gavin himself began a bigger personal battle shortly after the launch of the first R U OK? Day, being diagnosed with cancer.
A double blow to the family was the later diagnosis of Gavin’s son, Gus, with a brain tumor. Both conditions resulted in Gavin and Gus passing away two years apart.
Gavin’s wife, Maryanne, said in an interview to the ABC’s Australian Story program that Gavin setting up R U OK? has helped her and their surviving children, Josie and Van, to cope with the tragedy. “He had no idea what was down the track for us, so it's so strange to think that what he put in place was actually going to help his family when he died, and it has enormously.”
Spreading awareness of suicide prevention is a team effort and at LIVIN we feel it’s important to support that awareness in every possible way including banding together with other incredible organisations such as R U OK?
Remember, It Ain’t Weak To Speak and if you suspect someone you know is having a tough time, ask that question R U OK? It could make all the difference.
If you are struggling, please visit our Get Help Page for organisations that can help.