Film raises suicide awareness
BID TO EDUCATE YOUTH ON SUICIDE WARNING SIGNS
A YOUNG filmmaker has taken matters into his own hands after losing two high school friends to suicide.
Damien Martin (18) is getting ready to release part three of his short film Suicide Awareness on Facebook.
Originally posted on his Damo vs the World Facebook page, which has more than 3200 likes, the first video ran for just under four minutes.
But it has notched up more than 27,000 views on Facebook since its release in 2016.
The second instalment was released last year and has reached more than 4000 views.
Martin, who lives in Canning Vale but grew up in Mandurah, said the tragic deaths of two school friends inspired him to to tackle the problem.
“When I was in Year 11, I had two friends I played cricket with; one of them was called Phoenix and out of the blue, with no warning signs, he took his life,” he said.
“It affected the whole school pretty bad and when his funeral came, this guy called Jake that night took his own life.
“That was a big shake-up to the whole area.”
Martin said he wanted the films to educate people his age about depression, suicide and warning signs.
“I wanted to spread awareness to the younger kids,” he said.
“I’m young myself; I can’t make one for adults because they go through different struggles, break-ups and I’ve never experienced that.
“The main thing I wanted to get across was the warning signs; the friends that took their lives, their parents said they hadn’t seen warning signs.
“But I thought to myself there still may have been and my main message was to be able to recognise when someone is depressed or suicidal.”
Martin said creating the film had been a tough ordeal, given the serious subject matter, but he had also found it to be enlightening.
“I learnt a lot more about the issue and how easy it is to fall into depression and how we can go from being normal, in a sense, to being depressed,” he said.
If you or anyone you know is struggling with mental health issues, support is available from Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800, Lifeline on 131 114, or beyondblue on 1300 22 46 36.
Damien Martin has created three short films to raise awareness of suicide.