Most people probably don't know how important the work of Mind is to me but the work that this incredible charity does has not only touched my life, but the lives of many people around me. After years of struggling with panic attacks and feeling down when I was at my lowest points of Fibromyalgia, I was diagnosed with depression nearly a year ago. I'm really lucky in that I was given the appropriate help through my local GP, but through my experiences I noticed shortfalls, from the lack of services available at university for students with problems to a general misunderstanding amongst people about what mental health problems actually entail. Whilst I am now, with the help of anti-depressants and the best support circle, new life and job ever, living a really happy life, I have seen others with similar problems fall under the radar and feel blessed to be in the position I am.
There are so many problems with the treatment of mental health in popular culture, from University's not giving students the right support or counselling (often from a lack of funding) to late diagnosis due to a misunderstanding of symptoms. No one should have to face mental health problems alone and Mind as a charity helps counter this problem through their incredible services across the UK. Their website alone has helped me with close friends mental health problems, by giving me an understanding of what they're going through.
Personally, I have found that exercise, running in particular, has helped me through my depression, clearing my head releasing those very important endorphins. I have chosen to run the Oxford Half Marathon in October 2014 and then London Marathon in 2015 to raise money for Mind as I will be helping others in the way I know best and hopefully encouraging some other people to take up exercise as a way to encourage better mental health.
Anyone who has met me will know this will be a challenge and a half as training for a marathon will push me both mentally and physically further than I've ever been before.
Please sponsor me so Mind can continue their incredible work and ensure that no one with a mental health problem feels alone.