A FORMER Albury deputy mayor has urged the community to help fund a film tied to the Border's Winter Solstice mental health evening.
David Thurley wants his city to support filmmaker Helen Newman, whose Solstice aired at Albury's Regent Cinemas last weekend.
"This film offers us the opportunity and this city the opportunity to become leaders in doing something about mental ill health," Cr Thurley told Monday night's council meeting.
"I understand from Helen Newman of Nomad Films that she would require about $120,000 to bring this film to an international standard documentary and I believe by raising our voice here and by contacting our federal and state member and perhaps even a shout-out to most service clubs that we can be the leaders in getting this film up to the standard required.
"It's a brilliant gut-wrenching film already but the filmmaker herself is a bit of a perfectionist and she wants to see it in a much better state before it gets launched nationwide and eventually to the world."
Newman told The Border Mail on Friday that she estimated $150,000 was needed to complete her work and extend it from 50 to 80 minutes.
That would include travelling to England to speak to those involved in a global mental health organisation that included the story of Solstice founders Annette and Stuart Baker who lost their daughter Mary to suicide.
That money has come from individual donations, sponsorships and community grants.
"I'd like it to be completed by the end of 2020 and then have it ready for submissions to film festivals and to have conversations with broadcasters," Newman said.
"My aim is to have it seen as widely as possible and my opinion has been reinforced by what I saw at Regent Cinemas.
"Those that watched it they were engaged and they were empowered."
Newman said feedback from mental health advocate Patrick McGorry, who's in the film, was "reaffirming".
"I feel if someone, who has spent decades looking at mental health and suicide and the factors that can lead it, thinks it's worthwhile then I'll take that," she said.
Mrs Baker said she would like Solstice to be screened to Prime Minister Scott Morrison and other politicians.
In the film she likens the solace provided by Winter Solstice to Relay for Life.
"A person has died of cancer they do Relay for Life, I guess I really think the Winter Solstice is our Relay for Life," Mrs Baker said.