It’s the 10th anniversary of the ride that inspired a nation and the ninth year since cattle producers from the South West of Western Australia, Peter and Judy Milton, have become community leaders of the Black Dog Ride.
With an aim to raise awareness of depression and suicide prevention, particularly amongst primary producers, the Miltons have travelled as far South as Northcliffe to as far North as Wyndhan and Kununurra with cattle on-board.
They have collaborated with local cattle producers and community members to arrange the preparation and travel of the animals, with one purpose in mind; to start conversations around mental health issues in rural and remote regions.
The Miltons have taken steers named ‘Winston’ and heifers named ‘Clementine’ to many community engagements, including private and public schools, the Busselton Jetty, Parliament House, the Perth Royal Show, mine sites, shopping centres and men sheds.
Since 2010 they have sold a total of 13 cattle at auction throughout Australia and have donated more than $100,000 to the charity.
The decision to raise funds and shine a light on mental health issues affecting rural communities began at the 2011 Perth Royal Hereford Feature Show.
Four Hereford studs, Copplestone, own by the Miltons, Kildarra, Westhaven and Countach, came together to auction off two charity steers for the Black Dog Ride.
The Hereford and Hereford cross steers fetched a collective of $8050 and marked the start of the Miltons journey raising thousands for charity.
“It was supposed to be a one-off thing, but after meeting so many people and hearing their stories, I knew it couldn’t end, Peter said.
“I have had such a fortunate life, but one in four people are affected by depression in their lifetime, so if I can help in some way I will.”
This year the Golding family, Little Meadows Angus stud, Dardanup, WA, will be generously offering a charity heifer, Little Meadows Wilcoola P7 (ET) (AI), who will be up for auction at the 2019 Royal Melbourne Angus Feature Show, joining the 100-year celebration of registered Angus cattle in Australia.
Wilcoola P7 will be offered for auction at the conclusion of the Angus judging on Sunday, September 29 at approximately 4pm Eastern Standard Time.
The thick, easy-doing female, which expressed femininity, high growth and docility is sired by Pathfinder Genesis G357 (AI), who was proven through the Angus Sire Benchmark Program and stands in a class of his own for the largest growth bull in ABSP.
P7 is out of a great matron, Coonamble D252, who the stud purchased at the Coonamble Angus female reduction sale in 2015.
D252 grandmother is Ardrossan Wilcoola K31, known as one of the best Wilcoola cows in Australia.
Little Meadows stud principal Tony Golding said the family was honoured to be offering a heifer of this calibre to the industry with all proceeds going to Black Dog Ride beneficiaries.
“We decided to offer one of our top young females as an expression of our support to all the farmers who have been affected by the devastating drought.
“The hardship it has put on livestock producers and their families is immeasurable and sadly its ongoing,” Tony said.
“As a family we are very pleased we can support the efforts of the Miltons, who have countlessly and continually aim to raise awareness of depression and suicide prevention in rural and remote communities.”
Thank you to all the Sponsors
“It’s important to let people know it’s ok to say you’re not ok”
By Trinity Golding