Coffee lovers were surprised and delighted with a free cup ‘on HealthWISE’ when they visited Coogle Cottage on September 11.

The local health organisation shouted the morning rush in coffee shops throughout the region in an effort to work with local country
businesses and give customers a break.

The free coffee came with a reminder to check in with friends and family as part of R U OK? Day and World Suicide Prevention Day.

Customers were offered resources on how to start a conversation on mental health and information on a free Hunter New England and Central Coast PHN counselling service called Mind Health.

“People can feel powerless when confronted with mental illness and suicide, and it is important to recognise that community education and connectedness is one of the best models towards prevention,” said HealthWISE senior mental health clinician Anne Galloway.

“Given these difficult times, HealthWISE decided to partner with cafes in locations where we have offices across the region.

“What better place to begin a conversation with someone? It could be a work colleague or it could be someone you nod to everyday.

“We sponsored coffee as a little act of kindness, providing an opportunity for people to step back for a moment and reflect on how they’re doing and also how their neighbours or friends are doing.”

Coogle Cottage owner Matt Fife was delighted to take part in the activity.

“People were really confused at first, then once it was explained they said it made their day,” he said.

“People left feeling good which is what we were aiming for.”

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