by Jacob Wilson
SUICIDE prevention awareness wasn't the only thing the Run a Mile in their Shoes Fun Run was about today at the Whitsunday Sailing Club.
It was also about uniting a smiling community behind a common cause and giving people an opportunity to make new friends.
A Mile in their Shoes president Jack Lumby said this was what the Fun Run was all about.
"A big part of this is about getting the community talking and there are a lot of people here talking to each other for the first time and hopefully those friendships will continue from today,” he said.
The Fun Run was one of the Airlie Beach Race Week on shore events and included support from the Whitsunday Sailing Club, Whitsunday Running Club and members of the community who were getting involved - whether by running or walking.
For each lap completed by the participants $1 was raised to support the Whitsunday Suicide Prevention Network which delivers mental health programs in the Whitsunday community.
Bald Eagles vice president Kevin Fanke said the spirit of the day was all about "mates helping mates”.
"A Mile in their Shoes is about raising awareness in terms of domestic violence and alcohol abuse, and that needs more discussion,” he said.
"Its not all about suicide prevention.”
Cr Ron Petterson echoed Mr Fanke's sentiments and said the whole idea of the event was for people to "walk and talk”.
"We want to remove the stigma behind speaking out and give people a chance to go out and about with a smile,” he said.
Fun Run volunteer Paul Baker said it was clear that the positive message of the event had hit home
"Whether or not people have been involved in the Fun Run I have seen a lot of smiles on peoples faces and that has hit home for me,” he said.
The Fun Run was expected to have raised about $200.