Charity Profile: Mind

What’s this charity profile thing you’re including in the blog? Run Big Year is as much about the fundraising as it is about the running. As such I want to let people know a bit more about the charities that I am supporting. Charity Profiles entries will let me give a brief overview of each charity and why I’m supporting them

So who is featured in this profile? I gave Twitter users the chance to choose which charity top I would wear for my first race. They chose Mind so it seems appropriate to profile them first.

What do Mind do? Mind provide advice and support to anyone experiencing a mental health problem. They also work hard to raise awareness of mental health issues and promote understanding.

Who does this help? It is estimated that in any given year 1 in 4 people will experience a mental health problem. For some people this will be something they live with for their whole lives whilst for others it can be a short term situation where their normal coping mechanisms are overwhelmed. If you are lucky enough not to be directly affected then you probably know an awful lot of people who are. So this helps pretty much everyone!

I might need some help – how do I get it? It depends what help you need. The Mind website provides useful information about various mental health problems, how to cope with them and how to help others. The Mind Infoline (0300 123 3393) is available for information on types of mental health problems, where to seek help, what treatment is available and on advocacy. They also provide a Legal Line (0300 466 6463) for information and advice in relation to mental health law. They also have a yellow button at the top of their website for if you need urgent help. If this is the case you may also wish to consider calling the Samaritans on 116 123.

Are Mind a UK charity? Mind are active in England and Wales but not currently in Scotland or Northern Ireland. If you’re in Scotland you might find The Scottish Association for Mental Health useful. For Northern Ireland you can try Inspire (formerly The Northern Ireland Association for Mental Health).

So why have you picked Mind to support? When I chose my charities I wanted to pick a variety of causes. Each is important to me for different reasons, but Mind is perhaps the one that is most personal to me. I have previously been diagnosed with Social Anxiety and have had some times that weren’t so great. At the time of my diagnosis I felt that I did not get the support that I needed. I don’t want that to be the case for other people who need help.

Are you Ok? I’m doing fine at the moment, thanks for asking.

Is the Social Anxiety why you’re a bit rubbish on Twitter? Hey, be nice! But if by rubbish you mean why I don’t tweet much and don’t interact as much as I could with other users then I would say that it is certainly a factor.

So is there anything else that made you want to support Mind? Of course. I know a lot of other people who have had or are having mental health problems. This includes family, friends and colleagues – like I mentioned earlier this affects a lot of people. There is also a more sentimental reason too.

Oh? Care to share? This is not my first time as a Mind fund-raiser. On the last occasion I also blogged about it and it was this blog that inspired my wife to propose to me. She wasn’t my wife then of course.

Congratulations! Your story makes me want to raise money for Mind too. Where can I find out more? To find out more about fundraising for Mind just click here.

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