We understand you might have some questions regarding the new Out of the Shadows campaign, we’ve pulled together some FAQ’s to help answer some of your questions.

For any further information required please contact:

James Duffy, Partnerships and Community Fundraising Manager
[email protected]


Why the change to Out of the Shadows this year?

In light of COVID-19 restrictions LLA is presenting options for Lifeline Centres to hold Out of the Shadows reflections this year to support Lifeline’s National observance of World Suicide Prevention Day in a safe and reflective manner. 

We’ve taken care to ensure communities and supporters can engage with us in a way they feel most comfortable.

Whilst designing the campaign this year we’ve considered the following priorities 

  • Provide a safe space for those touched by suicide to reflect   
  • Ensure the health and wellbeing of our staff, volunteers and supporters 
  • Maintain health and safety of our communities
  • Respect and protect the identify of Out of the Shadows
  • Raise funds for Lifeline 

We’re pleased to share these options with you for Out of the Shadows as you plan and execute such an important event locally in a changing environment.

COVID restrictions are different in my state, why can’t I hold a physical event? 

We ask you to use your best judgement in limiting risk and potential public transmission.  

Whilst we understand that current COVID restrictions and social distancing regulations vary from state to state we do ask Centres to be mindful of the wider part we play in reducing the COVID-19 pandemic across Australia. Community safety must come first. 

Why a virtual walk?

We recognise the important opportunity for connection that Out of the Shadows walks provide for Centres and their networks and we want to encourage people to walk as they usually would, but while observing safe social distancing. 

Virtual walks will assist Lifeline to maintain the opportunity to connect with our networks and even grow OTS events next year.

Differing state restrictions mean we need to be adaptable and flexible.

And we ALL have a part to play in minimising risks of community transmission and the spread of COVID-19.

A Virtual walk also offers a smaller way to get involved, have united communities and also to navigate the risk of pushing a Lifeline branded walk.

How will the virtual walk address the opportunity for community connection and unity this World Suicide Prevention Day?

We have worked to build the virtual walks so that they maximise the opportunity to encourage compassion, connection and hope by including the following options: 

  • Set a specific date and time for your walk – whilst members of the community will be walking separately just knowing that you are participating with others is great way to feel connection and inclusion 
  • Keep it local – cut down travel times on Public Transport, do the physical walks in small gatherings living close to each other.
  • Zoom – Community members can set up a specific Zoom meeting and share details with their walkers. They will be encouraged to take their phones and join the special Zoom so they can see and feel the community spirit in a safe environment 
  • We encourage centres to put a call in to any members of the local community who have highlighted they will be walking to let them know you are thinking of them and to enjoy their walk 
  • Share Holding on to Hope podcast series – give them some guidance or advice for them to share the new Lifeline service offering.
  • Record an Opening Reflection for your community – make sure you post it on the day of your walk 

Virtual Flower– Whilst attendees won’t have the opportunity to write in a memory book, please direct people to plant a flower instead. This will give the walk more meaning – steps we can all take to prevent suicide.

I don’t know how to do hold a virtual walk

We will provide some guidelines ahead of the walk to help you in your planning. 

STEP 1: Decide on a date and time to hold your virtual event 

STEP 2: Upload details of your walk to the website Centre, Date, Time, Contact Information: 

STEP 3: Email to community to alert them of changes Out of the Shadows this year 

  • New: Introduce Out of the Shadows centre virtual garden – for an online digital dedication 
  • Invite them to join your centre virtual walk – include details of your walk and more information will be provided when registering 
  • Encourage them to do their own (with a closed group) 

How long should the walks be?

The walks can be any length. 

We would recommend that you advise supporters not to travel huge distances to participate in their local walks.  

For those looking for a challenge/ connection: Perhaps 3,045 steps (to represent those lost to suicide in the last reporting period (2018).) 

The beauty in this idea is that Australians can support in anyway they like, a walk around the garden, the neighbourhood or local parklands.

How do we promote the virtual walks?

LLA will provide some email templates for you to utilise and some social media materials to help promote your walk. Here are some handy hints 

  • Encourage your community to participate in Out of the Shadows virtual walk 
  • Place posters and flyers in your local community business windows
  • Contact your local media and request they promote Out of the Shadows advertisements
  • Contact your local media outlets (newspapers, TV and radio stations) and ask them to promote Out of the Shadows
  • Let your community know you are hosting a virtual Out of the Shadows walk on socials 
  • Utilise the social media and digital assets, update your social channels and make sure you feature OOTS on your website, if you have access to a database send out an EDM

Virtual Garden

Why a virtual garden?

This virtual component provides individuals who may not feel comfortable going outside, particularly those at risk, to be able to do something to mark WSPD anytime, anywhere. 

Flowers can convey love, facilitate expression, provide meaning and communicate emotions that words fail to capture. 

Planting shrubs, plants or trees to mark a significant moment can create a living legacy that honours life and milestones.

Spring is the season of renewal and rebirth which aligns with the timings of World Suicide Prevention Day on September 10th

Renewal and rebirth connect greatly with the key themes of this campaign: reflection, recovery, hope and prevention.

What is the meaning behind the landscape?

We wanted to re-create an Australian scene to reflect some of the superb walking destinations and beautiful backdrops provided by you, the centres over the years. 

In addition we’ve payed homage to the traditional Out of the Shadows walks hosted by centres at dusk with the inclusion of a visible walking trail and a sunrise scene. 

Key Elements

  • Each plant will have a description so Australians can personalise 
  • The build will feature a sunrise (to reflect Out of the Shadows) 
  • Option to write a message of support 
  • Donation 
  • Shareable via social channels 

What sort of plants are they?

We wanted to keep the virtual garden traditionally Australian and consider the environmental/sustainable impact. 

  • Planting Australian native plants attracts native wildlife. 
  • Planting Australian natives are generally easier to grow and require minimal maintenance.

We’ve selected four varieties of native shrubs/ plants that can withstand general Aussie climates for Australians to choose from:

Morning Flag (Blue) IN MEMORY OF

A flower for someone lost to suicide, loved and remembered

A reflection on a life lost to suicide and the pain for those left behind     

Description: A long flowering tuftie with grass like shoots, long slender leaves producing masses of pale blue-purple, iris like flowers in spring-summer 

Magenta Mist – (Purple) FOR LIVED EXPERIENCE: 

A flower to spare, a story to share

A journey shared. The voice of lived experience can offer hope to others. 

Description: compact shrub with pom-pom blooms that flower from the end of each shoot in spring -summer


A flower of support, a promise of connection. In recognition of the role we play in supporting people in crisis and preventing suicide.

Description: large golden yellow flowers bloom for most of the year amongst dark glossy leaves. The vivid flower adds vibrancy to gardens


A flower of commitment to bring hope and help to people in a dark place                                                                                              To ensure that all Australians experiencing emotional distress have access to 24 hours crisis support and suicide prevention services 

Description: Grey green slender foliage arranged in whirls on the stem. White flowers are produced year-round but especially in spring.

How does the virtual garden work?

Donors and supporters can visit the website and plant a flower as a digital dedication 

STEP 1: Select a centre they wish to support from a pre-populated list 

STEP 2: Choose to make a donation and plant a flower or set up a fundraising page 

STEP 3: Customise you native flower 

STEP 4: Write an optional message of support/ plant the native flower in the garden

STEP 5: Share with friends and family

Is there option to participate for people who don’t want to fundraise on such an emotional day?

We understand that people may not wish to fundraise. Supporters can choose to walk without fundraising. 

People can choose to make a donation of their choice and plant a flower in the virtual garden or have the opportunity to set up a fundraising page and share it at the supporter’s discretion.