'Sometimes you need someone to be there for you': Chesterfield man to run 400 miles to raise awareness for men's mental health
Over the next nine months, a Chesterfield man will run a total of 400 miles to raise funds for the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) and awareness about men’s mental health.
In 2019, men aged 45 to 49 had the highest suicide rate in the UK according to the most recent data from the Office for National Statistics released last September.
Curt Ledward, from Newbold set himself the challenge to run 400 miles from January 1 to December 31 in order to increase donations for CALM and support ‘underfunded and understaffed’ mental health services.
The Vision Express worker has already completed 115 miles in the first three months of the year and surpassed his initial £750 target.
Curt, who suffers from depression and anxiety, is passionate about using the challenge to raise awareness about the mental health problems men specifically face – to encourage them to open up to each other.
"My dad suffered with mental health problems, so do my friends”, he said.
"I know myself how hard it is to speak to people and hopefully even someone I'm close friends with or someone I hardly know can see it and think ok, maybe speaking to someone about it can help me start getting on the right track.
"There’s definitely a whole stigma around men opening up, with the stereotype that you're the man of the house and you've got to be there for everyone else.
"But sometimes you need someone to be there for you.”
The 20-year-old retail worker recently began therapy to help his anxiety and depression and hopes the funds he raises can help other men access help.
He has posting updates on his running journey on his Instagram account @ffscurt as he strives to complete a minimum of eight miles a week to complete his target.
"Some days I really struggle to just get out of bed and go for a run and then other days I will just feel the want and need to get out and go somewhere”, Curt added.
"The support I’ve received has been overwhelming, I never did it with the intention of people saying how well I had done.
"I just wanted to raise awareness for the situation and also to better myself as well.”
To donate to Curt’s fundraiser, click here.