Williams cocktail gala raises $80,000 for mental health services in the regions
Hundreds of people from around the State gathered at a paddock in Williams to dance the night away under the stars while raising more than $80,000 for regional mental health services.
Blue Tree Project’s Kendall Whyte and the Happiness Co Foundation’s Courtney Thornton partnered to host the inaugural A Night Under the Stars event in Williams on Saturday.
Guests were greeted with a magical sunset over the vast country landscape as they were offered a range of food and drinks.
The dance floor was kept alive by five-piece Australian rock band Dallas Radio, musician Fiona Rea, folk singer-songwriter Michael Dunstan and DJ NDORSE.
“The event was executed better than we would have imagined and the reception from all the partygoers was so positive,” Ms Whyte said.
“We are so proud to announce that $80,000 was raised for our purpose partners.
“All the money raised in the country will be staying in the country and we’re just stoked to be able to give back to the regional communities and especially towards mental health.
“It’s so important for us to have the difficult conversations at a community grass-roots level.”
The underlying aim of the event was to break down the stigma around mental health and to encourage people to talk more openly about the subject.
The funds raised will be distributed across six mental health advocacy groups and organisations including Men’s Regional Health, Mental Illness Fellowship of WA, Blue Tree Project, the 6B’s, Nick Robinson and the Happiness Co Foundation.
Opposition Leader and Member for the Central Wheatbelt Mia Davies congratulated organisers and the Williams community for throwing such a successful event.
Ms Davies said it was more important than ever to show support for regional communities as they grappled with rising rates of mental health issues.
“Regional West Australians are resilient but mental health is often neglected to make space for the critical task of keeping businesses, farms and communities running,” she said.
“The ‘she’ll be right’ attitude actually costs lives — we all need to acknowledge that it’s okay not to be okay, but more importantly that support is available, even in the far-flung reaches of our State.”
Ms Davies said money raised from the event would directly benefit the regions through mental health education, programs, workshops and awareness.
“The event has helped raise awareness for those organisations focused on regional health and well-being, encouraging a shift in culture around how regional communities deal with mental health issues,” she said.
Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.
Sign up for our emails