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Organisers and councillors at the launch in Estepona. SUR
Darkness Into Light Costa del Sol walks raise funds for suicide prevention
Community spirit

Darkness Into Light Costa del Sol walks raise funds for suicide prevention

The annual 5km walks are taking place on Saturday 11 May in three locations: Benalmádena, Mijas and Estepona

Myrto Kaltsidou

Malaga

Friday, 10 May 2024, 11:17

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The 2024 Darkness Into Light Costa del Sol walks are taking place on Saturday 11 May at three locations: Estepona, Mijas and Benalmádena. Setting off at 6am, participants will begin their stroll under the night sky, making their way along until the sun rises - an equally symbolic transition.

The event will help to raise funds for the Benalmádena-based mental health charity, Afesol Salud Mental, which has day centres along the Costa del Sol that provide support to family and friends of people struggling with mental health, including suicide prevention.

Participants in Estepona (Palm Beach Chiringuito, on Avenida de España 2), Benalmádena (Plaza El Remo, La Carihuela) and Mijas (Boulevard de La Cala) will complete a 5km walk, along with people in other 14 countries spanning five continents. Last year, the initiative raised over 9,000 euros in Spain and Gibraltar.

This international campaign was founded fifteen years ago in Dublin by Michael O'Hallaran, who, with a home in Estepona, brought it to the Costa. "Suicide was always swept under the carpet and that needed to change," the Irishman said. "Today we have come a long way but we need to continue to ensure suicide is spoken about."

Spain's 024 national suicide prevention helpline operates 24 hours a day and provides a free and accessible service for people to talk (in different languages) through their situation with trained staff.

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