The official opening of Hidden Treasures and its collaboration project with The Zachary Geddis Break the Silence Trust took place at 28 Long Commons in Coleraine recently.
Helen Thompson, founder of Hidden Treasures, has previously worked in retail for over 15 years and has now dedicated her new venture of a unique thrift store in Coleraine to making a difference within the community.
In late 2019, Helen devised the idea of offering ZGBTST the opportunity of becoming her charity partner in which the Trust would receive a space within her shop to conduct events for the community surrounding the topic of mental health.
This is one of the Borough’s only businesses operating in this ‘giving back’ fashion and aims to help families left behind by suicide and those currently suffering with mental health issues.
The Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council Councillor Sean Bateson who attended the special opening said: “I would like to congratulate Yasmin and all the Geddis family on the creation of this positive and welcoming space which will make a huge difference in the local community.
“As the official charity for my term as Mayor I want to work together with the Trust to raise awareness about mental health and encourage people to seek help if they need it. The Trust has great plans for their new space and I would encourage everyone to give it their full support.”
ZGBTST’s space is now open to the public and has a free of charge, non-referral, professional counselling service operating from it along with 1-2-1 mental health mentioning, and a variety of community events to benefit the area in its aim to raise more awareness of mental illness and decrease the stigma surrounding suicide.
To avail of this service, please call in during our drop-in times and fill out a contact form. The Trust will schedule your first session or alternatively contact the trust and arrange a meeting with them to discuss your needs and goals.
The other events are focused on gaps which have been recognised within the current system and personal experiences the Geddis Family have encountered after their son and brother, Zachary Geddis, took his own life in 2017.
Yasmin Geddis, founder of ZGBTST and her parents Louise and Terry Geddis, took notice of the lack of help and support they received during and after Zachary’s passing at only 20 years old, this is why they have developed a weekly bereaved Mother’s Group and Bereaved By Suicide Group - emphasising personal experience over professional experience and hope that members of the community will avail highly of this service and join together as a support system with people who know and understand the grief associated with suicide.
The ZGBTST Workshop also conducts, along with daily drop in sessions, other events such as creative corner where members can bring their own hobbies to the workshop and chat in the company of others and possibly learn a new skill, form filling Fridays to help assist the public with forms they may not know how to tackle or even where to start.
The Trust hopes once the community is aware of its new location they can begin to submit ideas they may feel the people within the borough can benefit from.
The Trusts weekly schedule is published every Sunday on their Facebook page.