Rotary Club launches crowdfunder to support mental health provision for young people


A Bedford Rotary Club has launched a crowdfunding campaign to support an extra 240 hours of therapy sessions for young people.

After local fundraising events were postponed due to Covid-19, the Rotary Club of Bedford Park has launched its new fundraiser, using the GlobalGiving platform, to help local young people receive counselling for anxiety and depression.

Their campaign to “Accelerate Mental Health recovery in Bedford Youth” hopes to raise at least £3,600. This will provide an extra 240 one hour one-to-one therapy sessions at Bedford Open Door, a registered charity that provides free counselling for young people aged 13-25 who live in or near Bedford.

Fewer than one in three children and young people with a diagnosable mental health condition get access to NHS care and treatment. 34% of those who do get referred into NHS services are not accepted into treatment. As a result, Bedfordshire Open Door has a current waiting list of 70 young people.

The Rotary campaign aims to cut that list by 20 – 30 or more if they can exceed their fundraising target.

With increasing instances of suicidal thoughts, trauma and self-harming, their help can’t come a moment too soon.

“It takes a lot of courage for a young person to ask for help,” said Rotary Club of Bedford Park president, Steve Peacey.

“That’s the moment they need to see a trained counsellor. We are asking people and businesses to help us make that happen here in Bedford.”

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