RUOKAccording to the World Health Organisation, each year approximately one million people commit suicide worldwide – around one death every 40 seconds. Today is the fifth annual R U OK?Day and the R U OK? Foundation has invited a number of well-known Aussies including Wendell Sailor, Darryl Brohman, Ben Ross, Brodie Young, Barry Du Bois to jump into ball pits at Customs House and Federation Square and have a conversation.

R U OK? Foundation CEO Janina Nearn said it’s important to ask ‘Are you OK?’ to family and friends that may be experiencing a tough time, as in Australia more than 2,300 Australians commit suicide each year.

“Suicide prevention is a complex issue and many people find it intimidating. By taking a positive approach, we hope to show people that meaningful conversations can make a difference to how someone is feeling,” Nearn said. “By encouraging more people to ask the question, we aim to build a society where everyone feels they belong and are protected from suicide.”

R U OK? Scientific Advisor Professor Graham Martin OAM said suicide prevention is something we can all get involved in.

“Some people feel so disconnected and isolated that they start to think about ending their own life. By asking how someone is going and listening without judgment, we can help to prevent feelings of isolation and loneliness.”

If you or someone you know needs help, please contact Lifeline on 13 11 14, Kids Helpline on 1800 55 1800 or the Gay and Lesbian Counselling Service on Evening Support line: 02 8594 9596 or 1800 184 527 (regional callers)- open daily 5:30pm-10:30pm

Lesbian Line: 02 8594 9595 or 1800 144 527 (regional callers) – open Mondays 5:30pm-9:30pm

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