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Mates run to raise money to fight youth suicide

Two mates have put on their running shoes and are about to hit the road in memory of a mate they lost to suicide last year.

Jack Mitchell and Max Sandstrom were high school mates of Eden Buckingham, son of NSW MP Jeremy Buckingham, who took his life last year. He was 23.


“After Eden died, it was just such a shattering experience for everyone who knew and loved him,” Jack said.

“We wanted to bring some light into the situation, and to highlight the importance of fitness and running to good mental health.”

The route was chosen to run through Bellingen, where the three boys became friends after Eden moved there from Orange in Year 10.

His father, Jeremy Buckingham is a former Greens MP and now sits in NSW Parliament for the Legalise Cannabis Party.

“To lose Eden has been devastating to his family and friends, the grief is as deep as the love we will always have for him. It is so important not to lose yourself to despair and find hope through action, to live well in their memory.”

“I am so proud of Jack and Max, to find a way out of the darkness and through this monumental effort take action to support those working at the frontlines to reduce suicide deaths in our community.”

The run is already on track to raise $10,000 for suicide prevention programs run by Beyond Blue.

Beyond Blue Community Fundraising Manager Zareen Syed said the organisation was grateful to generous supporters.

“One in five Australians is living with depression, anxiety, or both, and tragically nine Australians take their own lives every day,” she said.

“It costs $66 each time a mental health professional at our support service responds to a person in need, which means the funds Jack and Max have raised ensure over 80 people can access support when they need it the most.”

Suicide is the single biggest killer of young Australians, claiming around 35 per cent of all lives of young people aged 15-24.

Details can be found on Instagram @run4eden2023.

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