The family and employer of a young woman who took her own life last year will stage a charity ball in her memory to raise awareness for suicide prevention.
Jodie Jose, who was a customer services manager at the Santander branch in Sudbury, was just 22 years old when her friends discovered her body inside a car in Great Bentley in the early hours of March 5.
An inquest later recorded a verdict of suicide as a result of carbon monoxide poisoning.
Friends and family have now announced that the Jodie Jose Memorial Ball will take place at the Stoke-by-Nayland Hotel, Golf & Spa complex on September 9, with all proceeds going to Papyrus, a charity which is dedicated to preventing suicide in young men and women.
Betty Jose, Jodie’s mum, said: “Jodie’s illness escalated in a very short time, and we didn’t get the support we needed, when we needed it most to help her.
“We will always have to live with the fact that more could have been done for Jodie, and she should be here with us today.
“When Jodie died, her friends got together and raised money for a bench at Great Bentley, and we had some money left over. We started looking for a charity and found an incredible organisation called Papyrus.
“Much more needs to be done, and too many young people are dying needlessly every single day.
“It has been a painful, frustrating and heart breaking journey, and we want to do something positive for Jodie, to celebrate her as a daughter, sister and friend, and to support others.
“It’s a sad and serious subject, but it will be a happy and fun evening, and we hope people will support us by coming along.”
Jason Blake, manager of the Santander branch where Jodie was employed, who is helping to organise the ball, said her death had been “a huge loss” to the team, and they really wanted to help remember her and raise awareness.
“I worked with her for about three years. We are a very close-knit team,” he said. “She was lovely. She was a really nice girl, and the customers loved her.
“When I did the Three Peaks Challenge last year, I raised nearly £4,000, and a big chunk of that came from customers. She had a big impact on the customers, as well as the staff here.
“After I had done that, I wanted to do something else, so I got in touch with Jodie’s family and it’s gone from there. For the past eight or nine months, we have been putting the ball together.
“If it is successful, and it’s looking like it will be, we are hoping to do the ball annually.”
Tickets to the Jodie Jose Memorial Ball are £50 and include a two-course meal, table wine, live music performed by The Beavers, and a charity auction and raffle, which will both feature numerous prizes.
All proceeds from ticket sales, the charity raffle and auction and 10 per cent of the venue’s bar takings on the night will be donated directly to Papyrus.
To buy tickets, go to www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/jodie-jose- memorial-ball-fundraiser-for- papyrus-tickets-29726663250