A SUPPORT group for people affected by suicide is set to hold a "get to know us" event in the Wee County later this month.

The Neil's Hugs Foundation will stop by the Tullibody Civic Centre on Friday, July 26, in an effort to reach out to people in Clacks who may need their services.

The foundation was set up several years ago in West Lothian by Donna Patterson-Harvie, after she experienced her own personal tragedy.

She told the Advertiser: "Neil's Hugs was set up because I lost my son, eight years ago this September, to suicide.

"When I was looking for support there was nothing locally."

In a bid to fix that issue, Donna's established an organisation that offered people who have had similar experiences a "safe space" to meet up and talk.

But conversations don't necessarily focus solely on loss, as some people use the meetings to talk about the good times they had with those they lost.

Donna said: "Sometimes we don't even talk about suicide.

"I had my son for almost 32 years, and that's what I want to talk about.

"I like to be in a room where people can hear about my daft stories."

Speaking about her forthcoming event in Clacks, she added: "I know that [the Clacks] area has a high suicide rate, and I know there's families and friends in Clackmannanshire who desperately need something.

"We're happy to come over, and if people in Clackmannanshire want us to set Neil's Hugs up there, we're more than happy to do that.

"But even if they don't, we're still happy to help by doing things like offering advice."

Those who do attend the upcoming event will be able to hear from Donna about her experience.

An individual who uses Neil's Hugs for support will also share their story, and volunteers will be on hand to discuss their work with the group.

The event is set to run from 3-5pm, and anyone looking for more information should call Janice on 07446 170 002.