Take a skydive to help support mental health

WOKING Mind is inviting the public to join a skydive marking World Mental Health Day.

The event, to be held on Sunday 10 October, was inspired by Amelia Richardson and Sophie Hounsell, who recently completed tandem skydives in aid of Woking Mind. A tandem skydive is when the skydiver is harnessed to an instructor.

Amelia Richardson and Sophie Hounsell supporting Woking Mind

The students, from Woking but now at Exeter University, dedicated their jumps to raising awareness of the help that is available for people struggling with their mental health.

“I feel strongly about the awareness and help needed, especially recently, as I have struggled with my mental health and so have a lot of people close to me,” Amelia said.

“I understand how hard it can be for some people, especially if they aren’t lucky enough to have support from friends and family.”

More than a fifth of people in Britain have experienced symptoms of depression, which is double the pre-pandemic figure, according to the Office for National Statistics.

The experience that awaits the fundraising skydivers

The skydive has been organised in association with Skydive Buzz, one of the UK’s leading parachute schools, based at Dunkeswell Airfield, Honiton, in Devon.

Tony Bennett, chief executive of Woking Mind, said: “Access to good quality support services is more critical than ever and while we’re doing all we can to meet significant demand, we can do even more.

“That’s why I will also be doing my bit to help raise vital funds to ensure that anyone in Surrey has somewhere to turn.”

Tony will be joined by Mandy Dhingra, marketing and fundraising director at Woking Mind, to jump from an aeroplane at 15,000 feet.

Mandy said: “For many, skydiving is about facing your fears, but it can also have a deeper sense of achievement by helping you develop the confidence to face fears in other walks of life.

“We are excited about partnering with Skydive Buzz to offer this experience to anyone who wants to challenge themselves while raising awareness and funds for mental health support services.” 

Members of the public who would like to do a tandem skydive to raise funds should visit wokingmind.org.uk/sky-dive.

If you or someone you know is feeling lonely, anxious or struggling with their mental health, call Woking Mind on 07860 340 739, or visit wokingmind.org.uk.

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