In theory, showing compassion to those around you shouldn’t be hard.
It’s the age old adage of ‘treat others how you’d like to be treated’.
However, there are times that we all need to show a little more compassion, and that is what Sunday’s Compassion Walk was all about.
The free event organised by Compassionate Ballarat aimed to show locals how they can be more compassionate throughout their every day life.
Compassionate Ballarat Steering Committee member Dr Lynne Reeder shared her positivity about the event.
“The turn out from the community has been fantastic,” Dr Reeder said.
“We’ve had people here all morning participating in activities which has been great to see.”
Talking to some of those in attendance, the importance of the event really hit home for some locals, such as John Gabsch.
“Seeing all of this going on today, and so many people here looking to learn about compassion is amazing,” said Mr Gabsch.
“I suffer from severe anxiety and OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) and have been verbally attacked and abused countless times by ignorant people who don’t understand what I have to live with.
“People can be so quick to assume the worst about you or turn on you if you do struggle with a disability, so I feel like events such as today are really important to make sure those ignorant people don’t exist anymore.”
The walk began at 10am with a traditional welcome to country.
Participants were encouraged to walk around the lake, and take part in each of the five activity stations.
These stations included painting with the Ballarat Society of Artists & Peace Mile, a listening activity by EGF Disability Employment, reading with Ballarat Libraries, woodworking and puzzle collecting by Men’s Shed, and finally a Virtual Reality experience to promote dementia awareness with Bigger Hearts for Dementia Australia.
Music, food, and other stalls were available throughout the day.
The day concluded with a welcome home for Nick Locandro and his team from their 2000 kilometre dementia awareness ride from Uluru to Ballarat.
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