On Wednesday, 5th of April, the Darkness into Light committee members were joined by Brian Higgins, CEO of Pieta House, and representatives of the Clayton Crown hotel to present a cheque to icap, the Immigrant Counselling and Psychotherapy charity. Thanks to the generosity of the London Irish community, £3,500 was donated to the mental health charity.
The Darkness into Light walk was brought to London thanks to the support and coordination of the Kerry Association London and its dedicated members. The walk took place last year on the 7th May 2016 with an estimated 900 participants taking part in the charity event.
The next Darkness into Light walk will take place in London on Friday night 5th of May into Saturday morning 6th of May. It is a unique, early morning experience which begins in darkness at 4.15am as thousands of people walk or run a 5km route while dawn is breaking. The early dawn represents hope and is symbolic of the work of Pieta House; bringing people from darkness back into the light. This year will see members of the popular Irish band; the Monday Club, JP O’Donnell and Liam Gill lead the walk with members of the committee.
Brian Higgins, CEO of Pieta House said: “Pieta House is a national charity; we now have 12 locations across Ireland and provide intensive psychotherapy for people who are actively suicidal or engaging in self harm. Since we opened our doors in 2006, we have supported over 20,000 people who have not had to put their hand in their pocket for our services. Our aim is to replace thoughts of suicide with hope and self-harm with self-care. Essentially, Pieta House and Icap are working towards a common goal, to put ourselves out of business, to support our communities so suicide and self-harm are eradicated. That is why it is important that we forge partnerships with counselling and psychotherapy services in the international regions where our Darkness into Light walks take place. Thanks to these new partnerships, we are working together to review and explore how we offer support and how it can be improved.”
Catherine Hennessy, CEO of Icap, said: “Icap offers counselling and psychotherapy for the Irish community and other migrant groups. We have centres based in London and Birmingham with a national network of therapists. We work with people aged from their early twenties right into their eighties. We see people from all over Ireland and in 2015, we conducted a survey that revealed that we provide support services to people from all 26 counties of Ireland. These people approach us for a range of problems, from depression, anxiety to suicidal thoughts. We are delighted to work in partnership with Pieta House and all of the money that is fundraised from Darkness into Light London is spent supporting people who would not otherwise be able to afford therapy.”
Darkness into Light is the most vital component of Pieta House’s fundraising calendar. As demand for the service continues to grow and with more than 80% of Pieta House’s income depending on public donations, funds raised during Darkness into Light are essential for Pieta House to continue to provide a free service for the increasing numbers seeking help. The funds raised in London are equally split between the Pieta House charity in Ireland and Icap based in London and Birmingham.
For further information regarding Pieta House, visit www.pieta.ie.
For further information regarding Icap, visit http://www.icap.org.uk/.
For further information, please contact:
Darkness into Light London Secretary
M: 079 39017022
Darkness into Light London Press Officer
M: 078 64792597
Photo credit: Malcolm McNally – The Irish Post.