A Carrick campaigner is in the running for a top accolade in light of her ongoing work on suicide awareness and prevention.
Sami Cullen was nominated for the Halifax Giving Extra award, which recognises those who make a positive difference in their community.
Sami, who lost her 16-year-old brother Jay to suicide in 2007, has been the driving force behind a number of suicide awareness initiatives in Carrick, including a billboard in the town centre in September.
Sami said: “When I heard I’d been nominated, I was a little bit embarrassed but it’s nice to know that you’re appreciated for the work that you do and it’s not very often you hear positive news like this. Anything that brings more attention to suicide awareness and prevention is always good.”
The 24-year-old was nominated for the honour by Sharon Quinn, office manager at suicide prevention charity Lighthouse.
“I’ve been volunteering with Lighthouse in north Belfast for about five years now and I really support the work that they do. I’m also working with the Public Health Agency to produce a DVD about the impact of suicide on siblings, which is rarely looked at,” Sami added.
Describing Sami as ‘inspirational’, Sharon said: “As soon as I heard about the award I thought of Sami; she really goes above and beyond in everything that she does, whether it’s fundraising, volunteer events or suicide awareness talks.
“She has been extremely proactive in promoting suicide awareness and positive mental health since the tragic loss of her own brother Jay.”