Joe shares his story

Former NRL player and professional boxer, turned mental health advocate, Joe Williams.
Former NRL player and professional boxer, turned mental health advocate, Joe Williams.

Former NRL player and professional boxer, turned mental health advocate, Joe Williams is coming to the Bega Valley to deliver his acclaimed The Enemy Within workshops from Monday, July 31 to Wednesday, August 2

The workshops were organised with the help of the Bega Valley Suicide Prevention Action Network (SPAN), the Social Justice Advocates of the Sapphire Coast, the Reaching Out Foundation and Bega Valley Shire Council along with assistance from other organisations.

Ross Williams, of the Reaching Out Foundation said the “tragedy of youth suicide” drove him to organise the workshops. 

“This is about a positive, saying something can be done about it, opening up. Joe Williams is a mentor and a role model and he will talk from the heart; he knows what it’s like,” he said .   

Joe is a proud Wiradjuri 1st Nations Aboriginal man born in Cowra, NSW. Joe battled the majority of his life with suicidal ideation and bi-polar disorder. After attempting suicide in 2012, he felt his purpose in life was to help people who struggle with mental illness.

“Suicide prevention and awareness is everyone’s responsibility. Those affected can’t always face it on their own,” Joe said. He will talk about living with key values.

Joe’s first community workshop takes place in Merimbula on Monday evening and is a chance to hear what students and teachers will learn at the two schools which are participating, Eden Marine High School and Sapphire Coast Anglican College. 

Workshops:

Monday, July 31 Club Sapphire, Merimbula community workshop 7.30pm.

Tuesday, August 1, Eden Marine High School students and teachers workshop 11am. 

Tuesday, August 1, Eden Marine High School community workshop 6.30pm.

Wednesday, August 2, Wallaga Lake, community workshop 11am. 

Wednesday, August 2, Ricky’s Place, St John’s Church, Bega community workshop 7.30pm.  

Thursday, August 3 Sapphire Coast Anglican College, Bega, students and teachers workshop 12 noon.