Home' The Mirror Central Otago : August 21st 2013 Contents 2
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Grieving mother's bid
The pair have organised for Casper chief
executive Maria Bradshaw, who co-
founded the organisation after her only
child committed suicide in 2008, to give
talks throughout the region next month.
Mrs Millis said Mrs Duffy's decision to
tackle the issue of suicide publicly, just
nine months after the death of her son,
Mrs Duffy said ''I remember a feeling of
absolute disbelief and raw physical pain.
How could this possibly be true . . .
''I've found Maria (Bradshaw) and
Casper have helped me immensely and I
think that Maria coming to talk in our
communities will not only help others,
but also give others a chance to think
about this issue and ask questions.
''We need to all be thinking about this
and talking gently and openly about it
with those close to us,'' Mrs Duffy said.
New Zealand's rising suicide rate
reached 541 last year, a quarter of whom
The country's youth suicide rate, which
included a child as young as 6, was
double that of Australia and the United
States, and five times that of Britain.
Within nine months of each other, three
teenagers in the Maniototo area were
believed to have taken their own lives in
2011 and 2012.
A joint coroner's hearing was held on
March 18 but formal findings on the
deaths were not made public.
In June last year a police initiative was
launched which involved taking four at-
risk Maniototo teenagers on a week-long
life skills programme to the Burnham
Military Camp where they could
experience and practise life skills in a
challenging but safe and supportive
At the time, Tracey Tau, a mother of one
of the teenagers believed to have taken
their own lives, said the police
programme was what the youth of the
''There's been a lot of pussyfooting
around the subject but I'm very pleased
something is going on,'' she said.
Casper involved families affected by
suicide supporting other bereaved famil-
ies, and training families, communities
and employers to identify suicide risk.
The charitable trust's model was based
on research which showed families and
communities were most effective at
Its programme was adapted to meet the
needs of individual communities and it
had reported ''dramatic reductions'' in
youth suicide rates in communities it
was working with.
Central Otago police sub-area com-
mander Senior Sergeant Ian Kerrisk,
urged people to attend the meetings.
''Any self-inflicted death is one too many,
but we've had an alarmingly high rate of
self-inflicted deaths in Central Otago in
recent years,'' he said.
''This is a way that people can talk about
these issues and come together as a
community to try and find understand-
ing and a solution. I'm not saying we're
going to find a solution, but it's a start.''
Central Otago Mental Health Services
charge nurse manager Annie Jennings
was also positive about the initiative.
Getting stuck in: Mollie Marsh, left, and Emily Darling make a start on their entry for the Teviot Valley
Wearable Tartan Arts.
Photo: BARBARA WITHINGTON
New angles on celebration
What: Scottish Week
September 10: Launch of Teviot Valley
Wearable Tartan Arts, 5.30- 7.30pm,
Goldfields Hotel. No charge, nibbles
September 12: Whiskey Tasting Night.
Tickets from John Pritchard must be
purchased before September 2.
September 14: Kilt Canter -- Pinders Plunge.
The Clan Gathering at the Highlands from
6.30pm at Speargrass Inn, Fruitlands. Tickets
from Toni Birtles 446 8492
September 15: Scottish Golf on the
By BARBARA WITHINGTON
Some of the old, with more than a touch of
the new is the recipe for Scottish Week in the
The week starts on September 10 with the
launch of next year's inaugural Teviot
Valley Wearable Tartan Arts event, a chance
for people to put their imaginations into
overdrive and create something different.
Whiskey Tasting Night is on Saturday,
September 14, the same day as the Kilt
Canter along a section of the new cycle trail
to Pinders Pond where brave souls will take
part in the Pinders Plunge before sharing a
The Clan Gathering in the Highlands @
Speargrass is also on Saturday. Diners will
enjoy the best of Scottish fare.
''We are trying to keep it interesting for
everybody,'' Scottish Week spokeswoman
Trudie Marsh said, ''keeping in things that
people have been keen to do more often, and exploring some new ideas to keep it fresh.''
Chatto Creek Tavern has been
selected alongside upmarket bars
and five-star hotels as a finalist at
the Hospitality New Zealand
Awards for Excellence.
The tavern, along with two others
in the North Island, has been
named in the Best Country Hotel
Owner Lesley Middlemass said
the she felt privileged to have
been named as a finalist and was
delighted for the Chatto Creek
community to be acknowledged.
''What makes a good country
hotel is the community. You
wouldn't have a good country pub
without awesome people,'' Mrs
She also credits her staff for the
selection. ''It didn't happen on its
own. I've got exceptional staff that
work here,'' she said.
It was the first time the tavern
was entered in the awards.
Mrs Middlemass bought the
tavern 14 years ago after moving
to the area from Southland.
''For me it provides a good
lifestyle and good company. I'd be
one of the few pubs that's not for
sale. I have no intentions of
shifting,'' she said.
The tavern, which was over 125
years old, was a hot spot for Otago
Central Rail Trail users.
Winners of the 16 sections at the
awards will be announced at the
organisation's national confer-
ence, held in Queenstown on
September 25 and 26.
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