On 17th October a group of local men took on the Cambridge half marathon.
A conversation was started following the recent article in SuggeStIves magazine about men’s mental health, Alex McPherson decided that he wanted to run the half marathon along with some friends to raise money for We Are MENtal Health.
Trustees of the charity learned of Alex’s fundraising idea and decided they wanted a piece of the action too.
Tom Burrows from the group said “it was sometime after midnight whilst I was at play with my nightly demons I decided to sign up and pay the money to confirm my entry”.
And what a day it was! The weather was on their side, the crowd were lining the streets cheering them on and the boys loved every minute of it. And now this has got them fired up for more challenges in the coming months and into next year.
One of the biggest benefits gained from this experience for them was to understand how physical fitness can help you work on your mental wellness. It gives you the opportunity to feel more positive, alert and calmer. Everybody should take up some form of exercise to support good mental health.
We Are MENtal Health is a growing community aimed at supporting men and providing a safe space to talk openly, free of shame and judgement and to listen to other stories, gaining strength and courage.
The group began in the winter before lockdown hit in 2020, and although COVID-19 has had a massive impact on the ability for Tom and his colleagues to deliver groups it didn’t stop them. They believe now more than ever their groups are vital for men in the St Ives area.
Tom said ”our dream is to play a part in breaking the stigma and providing all men with an opportunity to tackle their mental health, and creating better mental wellness in communities across the county”.
With the money raised this is going to support with setting up two new groups in St Ives and Huntingdon, as well as giving everyone the ability to do so much more than just attend weekly groups. The men currently run groups in Somersham and Ramsey on alternate weeks.
With Tom, Ryan, Alex, Adam, and Nathan they have been able to raise well over their target and now this gives them the opportunity to meet and discuss the next stages of growth and how to bring the charity on into 2022 with a positive future.
If you’d like to get involved or come to a group get in touch via Facebook or visit the website: www.wearementalhealth.co.uk