A Spalding mum who has survived a string of traumas and mental health problems is thinking of taking on the London Marathon.
Vanessa Hills, the driving force behind a new group, Community Mind Matters, is about to start training runs with Adam Davis (31), who has already been accepted as a runner for the mental health charity, Mind, in the London Marathon on April 24.
This was something I wanted to do for my group – I want to get a group of fundraisers together to help with mental health issues here.Vanessa Hills
Adam was inspired to run for the charity after his younger sister suffered anxiety and depression, and happily found herself on the road to recovery following a spell as an inpatient at a young people’s psychiatric unit in Sleaford.
Adam read about Vanessa’s long battle with depression and post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) on our website – www.spaldingtoday.co.uk – and offered his assistance to her and the group she helped found.
Through the group, Vanessa wants to give people suffering from conditions like depression and anxiety the chance to meet, socialise, share solutions to problems and access help.
She said: “I am going to do some training runs with Adam and then I want to do the marathon the following year. It’s a goal for me to get better.
“I have got to get back my fitness because it’s good for my mental health.”
Vanessa would prefer to raise cash to help people locally who suffer mental health problems, but realises it’s tough to get through the ballot and may be forced to opt for a charity place on the run.
She said: “This was something I wanted to do for my group – I want to get a group of fundraisers together to help with mental health issues here.”
Vanessa may opt to raise money for Help for Heroes as she wants it to be for “something personal”.
Vanessa, who will be 48 on Thursday, was widowed aged 21 when her husband, Ken, was killed in the Army just four days before their baby son’s first birthday.
Adam was due to run in London last year, but broke his ankle. He returned to training in March, but it didn’t give the first-time marathon man enough time to be fit for the April event.
He’s stuck to a training programme ever since and expects to make it round the London circuit in four-and-a-half hours.
Adam moved to Spalding when he was 19 and has worked in a number of roles, including a lifeguard at the Castle Sports Complex, a PCSO and as a display manager with a fireworks company. He’s also a qualified lorry driver. To help Adam raise money for Mind and read his sister’s story visit www.justgiving.com/adam-davis15