Hog’s Australia’s Steakhouse Joins Fight against ‘The Black Dog'
Hog’s Australia’s Steakhouse has announced it will host a massive national charity event across its 80 restaurants in March next year, with all proceeds earmarked for a new charity partner that seeks to address ‘The Black Dog” prevalent in Australian men.
A Chance for Change (ACFC) began as a grassroots movement by two young men who were determined to put a spotlight on the fight for men’s mental health following personal experience with both depression and losing mates to suicide.
The movement quickly gained momentum and encouraged the founders to continue the fight and establish ACFC as a charity, which was officially registered in September 2016.
Hog’s CEO, Ross Worth, says the restaurant group has partnered with ACFC as it’s a cause that speaks to their franchisees, as well as their customers.
“We have restaurants across the country with a major presence in regional areas of Australia where statistics show higher rates of male depression and suicide,” said Worth.
“Depression and suicide rates amongst men in Australia are staggering, not to mention the associated societal issues that arise from it, so we’re very happy to partner with ACFC and do all we can to support their initiatives.
“We were able to raise $7,000 for ACFC in a matter of minutes just amongst our franchisees at Hog’s annual conference earlier this year so we have no doubt that a national event across all our restaurants will go a long way in assisting ACFC to make a real difference.”
Hog’s will announce further details of the annual charity event within the coming months but it’s slated for March 2018 and is expected to embrace the Hog’s philosophy of fun and community spirit, and have the backing of a host of Hog’s partners in sport, from the NRL to the Supercars series.
With the catchcry “speaking up is manning up”, ACFC aims to reform the current misconceptions of what it means to be a man in today’s society and empower men with the knowledge and self-confidence to stop ‘The Black Dog’ before it strikes.
ACFC CEO, Ivan Mardones, says that men are really suffering and he wants them to understand that there is help available, that people do care, and that no matter how far down they fall, there is a way back up and suicide is not an answer.
“Some of us at ACFC have lost mates and family members to suicide, or lived through the black dog and come out the other side, so we have a really raw and authentic approach to battling this epidemic,” said Mardones.
ACFC hosts regular Boys Day Out events for men 18+ which provide a safe and inclusive environment for them to speak up about their mental health issues, as well as provides preventative solutions for younger boys that encourage them to embrace a healthy and active lifestyle as well as speak up and reach out.
Mardones say these factors are crucial to the prevention of depression and that the support of Hog’s Australia will allow them to penetrate more areas of Australia with their workshops and programs and ultimately reach more men, both youths and adults, that are crying out for support.