Current Hot Topic for August 2018
The Inspiring Teenager who is Saving Lives in Sunderland
Paige Hunter has written more than 40 heartfelt notes and attached them to the railings of the bridge, in a bid to offer support to people facing a mental health crisis.
The messages penned by the East Durham College apprentice, from the Plains Farm area of the city include phrases such as: “Even though things are difficult, your life matters; you’re a shining light in a dark world, so just hold on”.
Her efforts have caught the attention of local police and last week as the caring teenager returned to the bridge Chief Supt Sarah Pitt, of Northumbria Police, presented her with a framed commendation certificate on behalf of the force to recognise her selfless acts.
“We thought it was important to applaud the work Paige has been doing and the help she has given those in Sunderland who are going through a mental health crisis,” said Chief Supt Pitt.
“Paige has shown an incredible understanding of vulnerable people in need of support, and this is an innovative way to reach out to those in a dark place.
“For somebody so young, Paige has shown a real maturity and we thought it would only be right to thank her personally. She should be
very proud of herself. It is important that we encourage people to speak out and raise awareness of mental health issues and the impact on peoples’ lives.”
After receiving the commendation, apprentice Paige, who works at Poundworld, said: “I wasn’t doing this for an award; it was just something that I wanted to do. My family are just proud of me. I just want to help people and I’ve been told it’s already helped save six lives. Since I put the messages up I’ve had a lot of comments from people. They’ve said it’s been really inspiring. It’s just amazing, the response it has had.”