Boot the Blues was an idea born at the beginning of this year on a frosty January day. Spurred on by my enjoyment of beating the January blues by running every day for national Mind (R.E.D January) I decided I wanted to create an active event for my local Mind to support the brilliant work they do to support those in our region who suffer with a mental health problem.
Tyneside and Northumberland Mind are a charity who helped pull me through the most challenging time of my life. The dedication and kindness of people who worked for local Mind and have helped me is something I'll never forget, which is why I knew I had to get involved in fundraising for the charity, so they are able to reach out to and support many more people out there just like me. Boot the Blues is a fundraising hike taking part along the Hadrian's Wall path- 28 miles of it, over three days. (15th-17th September).
Boot the Blues is for all the invisible mental health warriors out there who invisibly fight, each and every day, to maintain their mental health and survive the challenges we face. At the Safe Space drop-in support group that I attended last year in Alnwick I learned that far from being alone, there were many of us all fighting our own usually private and unseen battles. Safe Space gave us the opportunity to offload, to share, to support one another in shared empathy and to learn that we are far from alone in struggling sometimes with our emotions. It gave me that safe space to be me, to be honest and real and authentic. We dropped off our masks at the door, and we shared as much or as little as we wanted to in the group, in a climate of mutual respect, friendliness and compassion.
Boot the Blues is very special to me, as we are raising money for that exact same Safe Space group in Alnwick that I attended. As someone who has benefited from attending Safe Space, I mean it when I say that every donation matters, and every participant in the group matters. We are from all walks of life, all united by our wish for as many people as possible in the North East who have a mental health problem to be able to access support and find friendship via Tyneside and Northumberland Mind, to help enhance their wellbeing and a instil a sense of community and belonging.
To make a donation, please visit our Boot the Blues Campaign page www.justgiving.com/campaigns/charity/tynesidemind/boottheblues. For those interested in finding out more details about our Boot the Blues active fundraising event please contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org.