Weʼre raising £10,000 to raise awareness of mental health and promote positive mental wellbeing
- Atlantic Ocean
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Reach into the Blue is a solo rowing expedition across the Atlantic, by Manxman Andrew Baker.
The Reach into the Blue Expedition is an approximately 4000 nautical mile journey from Portugal to the Caribbean, in a rowing boat called Aurelia.
I hope to raise funds and generate awareness for Reach IOM and other organisations who contribute to a positive mental wellbeing.
Aurelia is adorned with the logos of three Not-for-profit organisations: Reach IOM; the Manx Wildlife Trust; and WhistleblowersUK. Each one, in their own unique way, provide an incredible selfless service, and I hope this expedition becomes a platform to raise funds and awareness for their causes.
Reach IOM is a charity which aims to demystify the social stigma behind mental health. They need donations for training and to build a facility where people can visit for help and support.
The Manx Wildlife Trust protect and care for our Island's wildlife and help people feel more connected to nature. They joined up with Mindfulness Teacher, Mike Kewley, to provide free 'Mindfulness in Wild Places' events. These wellbeing walks explore some of the Island’s most beautiful locations and offer focused immersion in the natural world which results in a lasting experience of wellbeing, interconnection and positive mental health. To learn more about how they promote a positive mental wellbeing or to join them or become a Citizen Scientist, go to https://www.mwt.im/nature-health-and-wellbeing.
WhistleblowersUK are champions of protecting the mental health of whistle-blowers with advice and support to help maintain good mental health because they know that healthy minds are better able to take positive steps to help protect others. Although based in the UK, they have extended their reach to the Isle of Man and are currently helping individuals with disclosures and organisations with understanding the positive impact from having a culture which positively reacts to whistleblowing.
I have put everything into this expedition: heart, soul, blood, sweat, tears and every penny for the past two and half years (although the seed was sown many years earlier)! Its not over yet; it has only just begun. I plan to leave the shores of Europe on or around 1st December 2020 and arrive on the otherside within 90 days. I hope you'll join me on this journey by logging on to www.reachintotheblue.com and track my progress.
I've personally experienced extreme lows. I've never discussed my mental health publicly, not even with family, only with friends (and strangers, strangely!). It becomes apparent when you do talk about your mental health that there are many others who feel, or have felt, a similar way. Talking about it and knowing you're not alone seems such a simple fix, and yet effective, but often not so straight forward. I have no doubt this row will be a mental challenge as much as it is physical. I'd like to share this experience with you., and hopefully encourage you to talk about your own mental health more openly.
Through my years of highs and lows I've discovered going for a walk in the Manx countryside, alone to clear my head, or with a friend, has been a life saver. Also, I've learned, setting myself a challenge and sticking to it keeps me even-keeled (over time the challenges have become more ambitious!)
If this has piqued your interest, and you'd like to keep up-to-date with my progress, you can follow where Aurelia is on a map and read my updates on www.reachintotheblue.com (click the link or save my.yb.tl/DrewBlue into your browser). When Aurelia and I return to the gem of God's earth, we will be available to share the experiences with you in person, which I very much look forward to. Your donation will help re-patriate Aurelia back to the UK, and then Isle of Man, so that I can visit schools and elsewhere to speak about my experiences.
Your donation will help ensure the Reach into the Blue Expedition reaches its goal, crossing the deep blue ocean and returning in one piece, while promoting a positive approach to mental health.
I encourage you to use the Reach into the Blue Expedition to open the door to a converstaion about mental health with your friends and family.
Thank you for taking the time to visit this Just Giving page. Donating through Just Giving is simple, fast and totally secure., and every pound is greatly appreciated.
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- 2 months ago
Andrew Baker2 months ago
So the website is nearly complete and ready for launch. I have most items needed for the crossing. There are some additional logistical difficulties to contend with but its all manageable. We're on track. I'm very grateful for the support and positive energy. Hugs and smiles have been welcome too!
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Andrew Baker started crowdfunding
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Jan 13, 2021
You are doing a great thing here. Fully supporting you and keep safe on your journey.
Jan 12, 2021
Good luck with the crossing and stay strong buddy! Seriously impressed with your challenge for a great cause!
Jan 11, 2021
Good On You Mate. I am proud to call you a friend
Jan 11, 2021
Best of luck Andy, you'll smash it!
Jan 11, 2021
Mr. Baker :) you are a legend wishing you a safe and amazing journey - take care of yourself x Nev
Jan 11, 2021
We’re so impressed by this challenge you’ve set yourself, & follow you daily Equally impressed that you’re doing it for mental health awareness. So proud of you. Cousin Romi & Aunt Barbara
Jan 8, 2021
Wow what a challenge and great causes! Wishing you well on your expedition :)
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