CALGARY -- Along with walking, running, cycling or hiking, Calgarians are invited to take in the sunrise on May 8 as part of Darkness Into Light in support of suicide prevention.

The fundraiser is part of a series of events being held around the globe organized by Pieta — Ireland's leading suicide prevention charity — with the local effort done in partnership with the Calgary Distress Centre, which provides 24-hour support to those experiencing personal or emotional crisis through its phone line at 403-266-4357.

Around the world, close to 800,000 people take their own lives each year, which equates to one person every 40 seconds.

“We have all been faced with some incredible and daunting challenges over the last year," said Pieta CEO Elaine Austin.

"Pieta is here to support all of those in suicidal crisis and our free counselling has continued, uninterrupted throughout the COVID lockdowns."

The walks began in 2009 with a five kilometre course in Ireland and have since expanded worldwide.

Organizers say 50 per cent of registrations and 100 per cent of proceeds raised remain in local communities to support suicide prevention efforts.

For more information, or to register, visit the Darkness Into Light website.