TOMORROW, as Tori Johnson would have turned 35, beyondblue would like to acknowledge the outstanding generosity shown by Australians making donations in his memory.
The amount raised is now $339,518.59. This will go toward beyondblue’s 24/7 Support Service, which provides free short-term counselling and advice via phone or email with mental health professionals.
There has been a significant number of government and corporate donations, including $100,000 from the NSW State Government, $51,000 from Lindt Australia, $30,000 from Westpac, and $10,000 from the City of Sydney.
beyondblue CEO Georgie Harman said the memorial fund will make a difference to many peoples’ lives, from those inspired to make donations in Mr Johnson’s memory, and to those who will be helped by using our Support Service,” she said.
“Tori would have celebrated his 35th birthday tomorrow. We are celebrating his life and honouring his memory and the impact he has had on others. beyondblue wishes to extend its deepest thanks to Tori’s partner Thomas Zinn and the Johnson family, for donating these funds to beyondblue’s Support Service, which provides help and support to people when they are having a tough time.”
Ms Harman also noted the extraordinary impact the Sydney siege and the tragic deaths of Tori Johnson and Katrina Dawson had on families across Australia and individuals who wanted to do something tangible to help and show their support.
“What has struck me about Tori’s memorial fund is that we have seen donations from families giving up Christmas gifts and making donations of whatever they can afford, from $10 to hundreds, to the thousands donated by the Lindt family, the big end of town and NSW government and the City of Sydney.”
Mr Johnson’s partner Thomas Zinn thanked those who had contributed to the memorial fund webpage.
“I am deeply touched by the overwhelming number of condolences and the generous donations made to Tori’s nominated fund at beyondblue,” he said.
“With the growing number of Australians reaching out to beyondblue’s Support Service every year, Tori would have been happy to know this initiative is going to help people in need to overcome their personal challenges and sometimes even save lives. Thank you.”
The Support Service is a free and confidential service available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for all Australians who are struggling or in crisis to get support, recover, and go on to lead happy and productive lives. beyondblue’s Support Service means anyone in Australia can talk to a mental health professional at any time of the day or night for free.
“There has been a huge increase in demand for the beyondblue Support Service over the past year and it continues to rise. More than 110,000 people contacted the service in 2013/14, and we’re anticipating more than 150,000 contacts from people this financial year,” Ms Harman said.
“Tori’s fund will mean we can continue to keep up with that demand, and every dollar makes a difference.”
To donate, please visit https://beyondblueinmemoriam.everydayhero.com/au/torijohnson
Learn more about anxiety and depression at www.beyondblue.org.au, or talk it through with our Support Service – phone 1300 22 4636 (local call cost from a landline), or email or chat to us online at www.beyondblue.org.au/getsupport