2012 Black Dog Ride to the Red Centre Raises $250,000 for The Black Dog Institute

This year, Black Dog Riders set a goal of raising a quarter of a million dollars for the Black Dog Institute. Today, we reached that goal.

Black Dog Ride Founder and First Rider Steve Andrews is excited to announce, "The amazing Black Dog Riders, with the help of our generous supporters, have pushed the fundraising total for this year's Ride to the Red Centre past our target of $250,000. These funds will enable the Black Dog Institute to expand their vitally important Community Education Programs. This fantastic fundraising effort comes on top of the Ride's major success in raising awareness and starting the conversation about depression and suicide prevention."

It seems incredible that what began in 2009 as one man's solo ride around Australia to raise awareness of depression has rapidly become a national movement of determined riders committed to raising awareness of depression and suicide prevention, in addition to raising vital funds for mental health support services.

Black Dog Ride is an independent grassroots organisation founded by Steve Andrews and supported entirely by volunteers who are passionate about starting a national conversation on mental health and dragging the black dog of depression out of the closet. Steve Andrews tragically lost his own mother to suicide and was motivated to raise awareness of depression by the devastating suicide of his best mate's wife. Every Black Dog Rider has been touched by depression or suicide and every ride is as meaningful to them as it is to the local people they meet on their rides, where Black Dog Riders are welcomed with enthusiasm, gratitude and open arms.

On this year's Ride to the Red Centre over 500 Riders participated, 220 of those Black Dog Riders riding all the way to the Red Centre. Over 800,000 kilometres were travelled and in only 7 days over 120 Australian towns received visits by Black Dog Riders, proudly displaying their Black Dog 'Winston' and determined to hold a conversation about depression and suicide awareness.

Black Dog Ride selected the Black Dog Insitute as the recipient of funds raised by The Ride to the Red Centre because of the Institute's world class reputation for research and community outreach programs. The mission of the Black Dog Institute is to advance the understanding, diagnosis and management of mood disorders by continuously raising clinical, research, education and training standards. In so doing, the Institute aims to improve the lives of those affected - and in turn - the lives of their families and friends.

A heartfelt thank you to every Black Dog Rider, every supporter, every sponsor and every donor. Together we are making a real difference in the lives of so many Australians who suffer from or have survived mental illness, and their families.

The Black Dog Ride community welcomes all messages of support here: http://is.gd/ncbVjW

Steve Andrews leads Black Dog Riders out of Coober Pedy
Steve Andrews leads Black Dog Riders out of Coober Pedy and on the road to the Red Centre.