Black Dog Ride brings a cow to the Bunbury CBD

Charles Pinto, Peter Milton and John Lewis stand with the donated steer Winston.
Charles Pinto, Peter Milton and John Lewis stand with the donated steer Winston.

BLACK Dog Ride board director and motorbike rider John Lewin coasted into the centre of Bunbury on Tuesday to promote awareness of the annual mental health campaign Black Dog Ride.

And he rode out with a prized 14 month old Speckle Park steer from Gingin in tow.

The steer, named Winston after Winston Churchill, was donated by the South West real estate company Summit Realty.

It will eventually be auctioned off to raise funds for charities such as Lifeline which fight depression. 

Black Dog Ride is a not-for-profit organisation which raises awareness of depression and suicide prevention.

Mr Lewin said the steer donation was important for two reasons.

“It raises funds to support these organisations which help people with depression, and it helps raise awareness around depression,” Mr Lewin said.

“Many people are keen to show off a broken arm or leg but won’t talk about a damaged mind and that’s what we want to steer the discussions towards.”

Farmer Peter Milton, who selected the steer on behalf of Summit Realty, said the bovine offering also had a more symbolic meaning.

“Many farmers are going through tough times and this is resulting in quite a few cases of depression and suicide,” Mr Milton said.

Mr Milton has had a long history with the Black Dog Ride dating back to 2010 when he first started donating.

“We picked Black Dog because of the pressure on farmers and since we started we can’t stop,” he said.

“It’s all about the message and the steer is a vehicle we’re using to raise awareness.”

If you or someone you know needs help, call Lifeline on 13 11 14.