A Griffith woman who became a single mother to four young children last year got a much needed boost when presented with a cheque at the Coro Club on Friday.
The day before Mother’s Day last year, Tamara Floriani’s 43-year-old husband Steve took his own life.
A horror few months for Ms Floriani finally saw a silver lining when she contacted Tracey Howard, event manager at the Coro Club, to organise the wake.
Ms Howard was determined to help. She runs the Griffith Amateur Talent Quest, and teamed up with Griffith Suicide Prevention and Support Group (GSPSG) to raise money for both the group and Ms Floriani.
Together, the groups rallied the support of the Griffith community and raised $4088.
On Friday, Ms Howard presented half that amount, a cheque for $2044, to Ms Floriani. The remainder will go towards GSPSG, who runs a telephone helpline to assist those battling with mental illness.
Ms Floriani has also been helped by her son Aiden, who rose to the challenge of becoming man of the house.
Most Griffins know at least someone who has taken their own life. Perhaps hardest to accept is knowing that person could still be here today – if not for our woefully underfunded mental health services.
Ms Floriani said Steve was an amazing father and husband, and felt the system let her family down.
“It seems unless you’re holding a knife and are ready to kill yourself, you don’t get help for mental illness. We tried to get help for Steve, but kept getting turned away,” she said.
The Griffith community as always steps in to help. For this fundraising effort, thanks is directed to Nicole Smith, Kay Fog, Corrine Waide, Karen French, Kim Stonham, Kate White and sponsor Donna Hardwick.
GSPSG continue to try and fill a void left by penny pinching governments, but are struggling to cope with influx of cases, and desperately need more volunteers.
If you’d like to make a donation or volunteer with GSPSG, please email Val Woodland at firstname.lastname@example.org