JE joins Sanctuary Trust on a Walk Into Light

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Jersey Electricity is delighted to sponsor the Island’s inaugural Walk Into Light  to raise awareness of the work of the Sanctuary Trust  which provides support and accommodation for men who have hit a crisis and have few places to turn. The first Walk Into Light takes place on Saturday 21 April starting in the darkness from Corbiere at 4.30am. It will follow the five-mile Railway Walk route arriving at St Aubin Parish Hall at sunrise just after 0600.

Co-Founder and Sanctuary Trustee Sean Power came up with the idea following the success of the Pieta House Darkness Into Light Walk which started in Dublin in 2008 and is now a worldwide phenomenon, with walkers from New Zealand to San Francisco supporting the suicide crisis charity every year.

He said: 'We are grateful to Jersey Electricity for supporting this first event which we especially want to make a family event and encourage families –  grandparents, mums, dads, children boyfriends and girlfriends – to get out of bed and join us on this special, candle-lit, community focused walk. There’ll be well-deserved hot drinks and bacon rolls at St Aubin Parish Hall at the finish and Liberty Bus is kindly providing a shuttle bus from 6.15am to transport walkers back to Corbiere to collect vehicles if needed.'.'

Sanctuary Trust opened its doors in a former guest house in St Aubin in April 2011. It provides shelter and support for men facing homelessness due to a life crisis, whether mental, emotional, financial, relational or job loss, sometimes exacerbated by alcohol or drug misuse. Its aim is to help those men get their lives back together with re-built self-esteem and self-confidence and return to being useful members of Jersey society.

The co-founders with former States Member Mr Power were the Reverend Mark Bond, Rector of St. Brelade, and the late Colin Taylor, BEM. The Chairman is Advocate Chris Renouf. Today, the Trust has two sites, Sanctuary House in St Aubin and Sanctuary Lodge in St Peter, that can accommodate up to 25 men for varying periods of time, and has helped hundreds of men get their lives back on track.

Mr Power explained: 'It’s simply about getting men out of the dark place they are in, for whatever reasons, and into the light and a new start, hence the title of the walk which myself and fellow trustees hope will engage the public and widen support for the work Sanctuary carries out. We have helped men of all ages and from all walks of life who, for whatever reason, have hit a bump in the road and can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel.'

JE CEO Chris Ambler said: ‘Mental health awareness is to the fore in today’s society but men often find it difficult to discuss problems or ask for help until things hit crisis point. Sanctuary Trust identified that gap in care provision and is helping not only Sanctuary residents themselves but the community as a whole, and we are pleased to help raise the profile of the Trust’s important work.'

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