21 October 2019, Sydney, Australia – Youth mental health organisation batyr have teamed up with the NSW Positive Rugby Foundation, and with support from Macquarie Foundation, to host Australia’s Biggest Bush Dance in support of drought-affected communities in NSW.
The event kicks off tomorrow from 7:30am at Martin Place, with the aim is to have over 500 people in cowboy hats and flannos doing their best bush stomp, boot scoot, line dance and everything in between.
You’ll get a chance to meet NSW Waratahs greats, both past and present, and pass the footy around; muster your courage on a mechanical bull ride; and grab yourself a sausage sanga. Bringing the tunes will be Australia’s most iconic bush dance band The Bushwhackers!
One in five Aussies will experience a mental health condition in any given year and the odds worsen for those living in regional areas. A person living in rural and remote NSW is twice as likely to die as a result of suicide as a person living in Sydney. Add to this the pressure of ongoing drought and loss of income on families, and it’s imperative that more needs to be done to support regional communities.
Since 2018, batyr’s Get Talkin’ Tour has visited 22 towns and more than 3,000 people in regional locations across NSW, delivering educational mental health programs for young people and the wider community. Donations from this event will allow batyr to reach even more drought-stricken locations.
“We are proud to be partnering with the NSW Positive Rugby Foundation to host Australia’s Biggest Bush Dance and make some noise all in support of regional communities really struggling with drought,” batyr CEO Nic Brown said.
“We want to continue to provide mental health support, tools and resources to high schools and footy clubs in regional communities to make long-lasting connections and impact.”
Head of the Positive Rugby Foundation Greg Mumm added that the Get Talkin’ Tour was providing tangible benefits to regional communities.
“Rugby clubs are a cornerstone of the community and through batyr’s Get Talkin’ Tour the NSW Positive Rugby Foundation has been able to provide mental health training and support in drought-affected communities, where it’s most needed,” he said.
“We are pleased and grateful to once again have the support of the Macquarie Foundation which is generously matching all donations that are raised this week.”
Australia’s Biggest Bush Dance follows last year’s world record breaking attempt at having the most number of people dressed in elephant onesies in one place. A total of 504 people donned elephant onesies all in the name of improving regional mental health outcomes and batyr is hoping for the same success this year.