The OLLIE Foundation named charity of the year

PUBLISHED: 09:26 16 February 2018 | UPDATED: 09:26 16 February 2018

‘The OLLIE Foundation logo.

'The OLLIE Foundation logo.

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A local suicide prevention charity is set to benefit from a year-long association with a nearby shopping centre.

St Albans-based The OLLIE Foundation, which stands for One Life Lost Is Enough, has been chosen as the charity of the year for The Mall in Luton.

The charity was set up by Stuart Falconer, with two other bereaved parents after his 15 year old son, Morgan, took his own life in May 2015.

It provides training in approaching and talking to potentially suicidal people - called SafeTALK - and highlights the possible signs that a person has suicidal thoughts.

The foundation’s coordinator Verity Bramwell said: “We are so excited to be partnering with The Mall.

“Being awarded their charity of the year presents us with an invaluable opportunity to raise our profile within Luton and deliver our life-saving training to even more people.

“Awareness is just as important as funding, as if no-one knows who we are and what we do then people aren’t attending our training and One Life Lost Is Enough.”

The Herts Advertiser has worked with the charity since it was established, including on the Something to Talk About campaign which helped to fund specialist suicide prevention training in St Albans schools.

OLLIE was picked out of several other charities following a shortlisting process and a presentation to The Mall’s management team.

Marketing manager at The Mall Lavinia Douglas said: “We are so pleased to be working with The OLLIE Foundation this year.

“They really moved us with their presentation, where they were up against three other terrific local charities.

“It was a difficult decision but it’s such an important cause, which we look forward to raising both funds for and awareness of.

“As a small local charity just starting their work in Luton we are hoping we can give them a platform to engage with the community and really make a difference.”

In the past the foundation has benefited from donations from members of the public and schools like Roundwood School in Harpenden and Samuel Ryder Academy in St Albans.

To find out more about the charity and the work it does in Hertfordshire, visit theolliefoundation.org

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