This Saturday at 4:15am, thousands of people will gather together at 168 different venues around Ireland to take part in the annual Darkness Into Light walk. And they won’t be alone.
Around the globe in 19 countries across 5 continents, more than 200,000 others will be walking with them.
Darkness Into Light is organised by Pieta House and proudly supported by Electric Ireland since 2013. Electric Ireland’s support has seen the event grow from 20 venues in 2013 to almost 200 this year, making a huge difference to countless lives along the way.
Marguerite Sayers, Executive Director, ESB, commented on the long term partnership between Electric Ireland and Pieta:
“Electric Ireland has proudly supported the Darkness Into Light event for the past seven years and over that time we have worked with Pieta to grow Darkness into Light into the global event it is today. Our mission is to help create a brighter future for the customers and communities we serve.
Darkness into Light reminds us all to believe in the power of hope. We are looking forward to walking with our colleagues, friends and customers on the 11th May and helping to make this year’s walk the most successful yet.”
Through this year’s The Power of Hope campaign, Electric Ireland aim to drive registrations for Darkness into Light to support its partner Pieta House whilst also highlighting the importance of empowering hope in one another.
The purpose of the event is to raise funds for the charity while also raising awareness around mental health, suicide and self-harm.
The first Darkness Into Light walk took place in 2009 when 400 people gathered in the Phoenix Park with the aim of helping to remove the stigma often associated with suicide and self harm and to raise funds for the vital services provided by Pieta House.
The organisation now has fifteen centres around Ireland providing support for people who are suicidal, self harming or those who have been bereaved through suicide. Without the funding from this flagship fundraiser, they simply wouldn’t be able to do the work that they do.
As well as helping to raise funds and end the stigma around suicide and self harm, the walk serves as a great symbol for the hope that can be offered to people who may find themselves in a dark place.
Speaking to Ciara Kelly on Lunchtime Live, Josephine Kiernan, Bereavement Coordinator and Centre Manager at Pieta House explained:
“The symbolism is around where people find themselves. The clients we meet on a daily basis speak to us about being in dark places and feeling alone in their journey… When we leave the venues on Saturday morning in Ireland and across the world, we are walking with those people from the darkness into the sunrise, into light.
People are encouraged to share their own messages of hope using #DIL2019 and #ThePowerOfHope in the lead up to and at the walk this Saturday, May 11th.
In 2017, one person a day died by suicide in Ireland and around the globe, 800,000 people die by suicide every year. That is one person every 40 seconds.
Pieta House works to offer free support to people feeling suicidal, self harming and those who have been bereaved by suicide.
The Darkness Into Light walk is the organisations flagship fundraiser, enabling it to offer its vital care for free. Last year, the participants raised a massive €6 million.
So, if you would like to be a part of this global movement of hope and to end the stigma associated with suicide and self harm, you can still sign up to take part in your local Darkness Into Light walk this Saturday, May 11th.
All you have to do is head over to www.darknessintolight.ie where you will find details about all of the walks taking place around Ireland and abroad. The new online registration system this year makes it even easier to sign up as well!
Electric Ireland are powering hope throughout the country, encouraging people to experience “The Power of Hope” at Darkness Into Light at 4.15am on Saturday, May 11. Register to walk across venues nationwide on the Darkness Into Light website.
If you need help, Pieta are there.
Call the 24/7 freephone helpline on 1800 247 247.
Text the word ‘Help’ to 51444 (standard text rates apply).