A former Gunnedah woman has organised a huge Fourth of July party to raise funds for the mental health facility she credits with saving her life.
Tyler-Jane Lumsden said she hoped to raise more than $10,000 for community mental health service Dean House, where she sought help for a year after a suicide attempt.
Eight entertainers have put their hand up to perform, including Golden Guitar winner Aleyce Simmonds, and at The Tudor is providing the venue.
Ticket sales opened on Friday and the event is Nashville/Americana themed, so guests are encouraged to come ready to party in their red, white and blues.
Miss Lumsden grew up in Curlewis, attending the public school. She finished her schooling at Gunnedah High School and worked in Gunnedah for five years before recently moving to Tamworth.
Miss Lumsden said she was open about her struggles with mental illness because she was “passionate about breaking the stigma”.
“I have made it my mission by being so open and honest with my mental health, hoping that will encourage others to do so, too, because there is nothing to be ashamed about having a mental illness, and it doesn’t define who you are,” she said.
“Having been a patient at Dean House myself – the service saved my life following a suicide attempt in April last year – this is a cause very close to my heart.”
Miss Lumsden said that some people, however, were “not as lucky and can not get the help they need quick enough”.
“This is at no fault to Dean House and the incredible staff they have there,” she said.
“This is a system issue: there is simply not enough resources and money being put into rural mental health by our government to accommodate for everyone – especially those in isolated areas who tend to fly under the radar and be forgotten due to lack of accessibility.”
‘Very special’ people pitch in
Miss Lumsden said “some very special musicians and local businesses” were helping her make this event happen.
Simmonds will be joined by Kyle Cartner, Maddi Lyn, Jared Scott, Beau Hatch, Amy Pain, Jarred Taylor and Ryan Morris.
“The line-up is incredible and features some of Tamworth’s favourite entertainers accompanied by a very talented house band of local Tamworth musicians,” Miss Lumsden said.
There will also be an auction with one of the prizes being a private concert, and hopes that local businesses will pitch in plenty of other items; a free drink on arrival; and food available for purchase.
Miss Lumsden said every cent would go to the cause.
“To get to see all eight of these amazing acts for just $20, with all the money going straight to charity, is an amazing opportunity for guests.”
Tickets are $20 from https://www.eventbrite.com.au/e/fourth-of-july-tickets-46319203986 and people are urged to get in early, as once the venue reaches capacity, that’s it.
- If you’re struggling, Lifeline’s 24-7 phone service is on 13 11 14