The West

Alex Newman. Picture: Iain Gillespie/The West Australian

Twenty-year-old student Alex Newman describes Lifeline as a life-saving charity.

"I'm the ambassador for Lifeline WA, so I wanted to get all my friends and family together to join my HBF team, which is The Lifeline Llamas," she says.

Ms Newman says the Llamas are raising awareness about the valuable work Lifeline does, with the added bonus of exercising.

"Exercise is the most under-utilised antidepressant in the world - so two birds with one stone," she says.

Ms Newman has suffered from depression and used the support services of Lifeline to get through dark times. Now she says the more the black dog is discussed, the better the outcomes for sufferers and their families.

"A lot of people don't talk about it, it's got that stigma, so running for it, and getting involved, just takes a little bit of darkness off the stigma, makes it a bit more in plain sight," she says.

Ms Newman has also started a Facebook event page inviting people to join her team.

As for preparation, she is doing her own individual training.

"I've got everyone to keep it casual, participate as much as they want to, whether they run, or walk," she says. "It's just about being involved, really, and not about winning."

She is urging participants in the HBF Run for a Reason to back a charity.

"Charities are run by fundraising, donations and community support. That's the only way they get things done and it's really important," she says.

The West Australian

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