herald

Tuesday 24 October 2017

Sallyanne - my son found it hard to talk about his feelings

Sallyane and Derry Clarke
Sallyane and Derry Clarke

RESTAURATEUR Sallyanne Clarke says her 16-year-old son Andrew, who took his own life, was typical of teenage boys who do not want to talk about their feelings.

Andrew's death just after Christmas 2012 is the reason why Sallyanne has become involved in Teen-Line, the national free-phone helpline for distressed teens.

Yesterday, with Republic of Telly comic Marcus O'Laoire, Sallyanne launched the Annual Across Ireland Motor Cycle Fun Run, which has picked Teen-Line as its charity for this year.

She explained that Teen-Line is "taking 500 calls from teenagers a week and they need to update their call centre and set up a texting service.

"After the summer holidays we intend to look for funding from the corporate organisations closest to young people like Google, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

"Boys are often difficult to get information out of, which was the case with my son. Kids are so used to texting, I think it will be a wonderful," she added.

safe

Her husband Derry says texting is "a safe way of starting a conversation" and they urged all teens to put the 1800-833-634 number in their phones.

All the money from the Across Ireland Motor Cycle Run between Limerick and Dublin on August 23 and 24 will go to buy equipment for Teen-Line to help it expand the service.

The websites are www.teenline.ie and www.annualacrossireland.com

csheehy@herald.ie

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