March 15, 2024

Ian’s long walk for mental health in aid of CPSL Mind

Ian will be setting off this month on his virtual walk for mental health in aid of CPSL Mind.

1.2 million steps equalling 678 miles is the latest walking challenge for Cambridge Utd FC’s Stadium Manager / Head Groundsman Ian Darler, this time in aid of local mental health charity Cambridgeshire, Peterborough and South Lincolnshire (CPSL) Mind. Having previously walked the equivalent of London to Qatar for the 2022 football World Cup, Ian is now ready for another epic charity mileage count as he aims to walk the distance from London to Berlin, the city hosting the Euro 2024 final.

Ian will be setting off this month on his virtual walk and hoping to finish before the July 14th final. “I’ll be walking every day to ensure we hit the target of 678 miles with the final part of the walk into the Cledara Abbey stadium, the home of Cambridge United.”

The driving force behind Ian’s fundraising walk, and wishing to support CPSL Mind, is his own previous battles with mental health challenges and how, through the telling of his story, the ongoing support he offers to others. “Having personally had depression and PTSD I appreciate how important it is to get help and support and to be able to talk to people about how you are feeling,” Ian explained.

“Since my recovery and publication of my book ‘Life’s A Pitch’ and writing the chapter Life Changing, I have been approached by several people who had been struggling in silence with their own mental health problems and thankfully I have been able to help them in a small way and they are now currently also in a much better place. I just wish I had told people how I was feeling sooner as things do get better when you talk, and I now talk openly about my mental health, and it is becoming a normal thing to do.”

Ian hopes that companies and individuals will support his walking challenge and also start the discussion about mental health in their workplaces and homes, a hope shared by CPSL Mind’s Fundraising and Communications Manager Gary Sutcliffe. “We are so grateful to Ian for embarking on what will be a lot of walking over the coming months and raising funds for our vital work,” said Gary.

“Our services have a very real impact on the lives of local people, organisations and groups so please do support Ian if you can. And please do look out for your family and friends and check when they say they are ok, that they are really ok”.

If you would like to support Ian’s walk please visit the just giving page.

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