Stepping out for mental health
Horsham’s Andrew Sostheim is lacing up his trainers to help a mentalhealth fundraiser get off to a running start.
Mr Sostheim is preparing to run 180-kilometres alongside mate Jordan Grooby, supporting his ‘Beyond the Border’ campaign.
The trek, from Stawell to Kaniva in three days next month, is one leg of Mr Grooby’s campaign – a 726-kilometre run from Melbourne Cricket Ground to Adelaide Oval between June 18 and 30.
The event will help raise awareness and money for beyondblue support services, mental health programs and resources.
Mr Sostheim said access to mental-health resources and support was a huge issue, particularly for people in the Wimmera.
He said ‘tagging along’ with Mr Grooby on his Wimmera leg was both an act of mateship and a call for increased mentalhealth awareness.
“The support system for people struggling with mentalhealth issues in the Wimmera is something we really need to target,” he said.
“You see it with the Naked Farmer, with all the farmers and people in the country affected by drought and mental health. And I’ve had family and friends who have dealt with this before, Jordan too.
“This is a cause that is pretty close to our hearts.
“The more we can do to raise awareness the better.”
Both men said they started running for the physical, mental and social benefits, completing several marathons between them.
However, for Mr Grooby, his
greatest passion was plagued by a struggle with anxiety and depression in early 2018.
He said feeling down and unlike himself led him to beyondblue, which became a life-saving resource.
“Running became a chore. I would find any excuse to stay indoors and not do anything,” he said.
“I knew something wasn’t right and I finally admitted I needed help and booked an appointment.
“Without beyondblue I wouldn’t have realised what I was thinking and feeling was not normal, and I definitely wouldn’t have reached out for help.”
Mr Grooby said he hoped Beyond the Border would help start a conversation, encouraging others to reach out and start their journey towards mental health.
“Ever since I’ve put this out there, I have had people get in contact with me about depression and mental health,” he said.
“Men especially tend to not want to open up about these topics, we try to be tough, it is almost an image thing.
“But you’re stronger talk about it.”
People can support Beyond the Border through a Facebook link on the fundraising page.
People can visit www. beyondblue.org.au or www. lifeline.org.au for information and support about anxiety, depression and suicide.
People in need of crisis support and suicide prevention services can call Lifeline’s 24hour hotline on 13 11 14. better if you
RUNNING FOR A CAUSE: Andrew Sostheim is preparing to join his mate Jordan Grooby, who is running from Melbourne to Adelaide in June to raise awareness and funds for beyond blue, for a few hundred kilometres on the Wimmera leg of his journey. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER