The 36 wackiest looks from Funky Shirt Friday at the Muster
A SEA of vibrant colour dominated the Amamoor Creek State Forest grounds yesterday as thousands of revellers joined in the Gympie Music Muster's Funky Shirt Friday.
The charity-driven Muster teamed up with the Royal Flying Doctor Service Queensland, shirt sellers TradeMutt and Gympie business Memphis Barbers under the banner of breaking down the stigma of rural mental health.
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The partnership aimed to raise funds for the RFDS and awareness of the ongoing mental health issues in rural communities, citing rural residents were one in five times more likely to commit suicide due to lack of support services.
Memphis Barbers owner Stacy Edwards said the initiative hit close to home for her, inspiring her team to turn $25 haircuts at the Muster site into profits for the RFDS.
Ms Edwards already gave her support to the #getnaked 4Muster photo competition, joining the likes of The Naked Farmer Ben Brooksby, Gympie Married at First Sight contestant Mick Gould and Nick "Honey Badger” Cummins.
"My battle was really hard,” she said.
"It's a super tough road but if (getting naked) is all I have to do to raise awareness for it I'll do it every day of the week.
"I had support from my family but if I didn't have them who knows where I'd be. I wouldn't be here.”
TradeMutt co-founder Dan Allen's personal experience in dealing with the tragedy of mental health struggles inspired him on the journey that led to Funky Shirt Friday.
"I lost one of my best mates to suicide in 2015, so that was a real eye-opener about the lack of understanding there is around mental health, especially among young blokes,” Mr Allen said.
"That was the driver for me to get into this space. The response has been unreal.
This has been my first Muster and it won't be my last. It's incredible how many people have responded to the cause, not just the shirts but relating to the conversation around mental health.”
TradeMutt had already sold out of its women's stock by noon yesterday, with men's shirts also selling fast.