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Best-selling Author Highlights Plight Of Yorkshire Coast Charity

GP Taylor

Published at 2:59pm 19th May 2015

Best-selling author GP Taylor has spoken of his battle with mental illness at the height of his career, to highlight the plight of a Scarborough-based mental health charity which is facing closure.

Graham says he wants to highlight the lifesaving work of Scarborough Whitby and Ryedale Mind (SWR Mind), a mental health charity that helps and supports almost 1,000 people.

The charity is facing closure due to a financial crisis and unless it raises the remaining £6,000 of its £20,000 target in just two weeks, it will close its doors for good.     

The ex- Church of England vicar turned author, who lives in Scarborough, found fame when his first novel Shadowmancer became an international best-seller.

 For the first time, Graham Peter Taylor is talking about how he attempted suicide following a long bout of depression. His depression was brought on after he was attacked by a gang of men while he was working as a police officer in Pickering. This attack left him suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

GP Taylor says even at the height of his success as he signed book deals worth millions of pounds with publishers Faber and Faber, he could not escape from the grip of mental illness.

Late one Sunday evening Graham decided to kill himself, but his attempt was thwarted, and with the help of his family and support workers he made a slow recovery.

Graham said: “In my darkest hour I was living in hell. I couldn’t see a way out. I’ve only managed to get through it with the help of my family, counselling and support for my mental health.

 “If SWR Mind closes it is a matter of life and death as this charity helps people who are experiencing a mental health crisis who are desperate for help.

“A lot of vulnerable isolated people who rely on the charity for support with things like going out, medication and paying bills will be left with nowhere to turn at a time when there is little support elsewhere.

 “I’d urge everyone to support this charity and help save it from closure. It could be disastrous for the people living in Scarborough, Whitby and Ryedale. What other help is there, very little"

SWR Mind, which has been established since 1962, employs 17 staff, has 60 volunteers on its books. It runs seven projects in Scarborough, Whitby and Ryedale, North Yorkshire, helping people with one to one support, groups, a telephone helpline, finance, debt and housing advice and volunteering opportunities.

The charity is in crisis due to funding cuts and has to raise its own cash to provide its support services as it is not funded by Mind charity shops or the national charity, which it is only affiliated to in name.

 If it hits its target through its Save SWR Mind Crisis Appeal, the charity will have time to secure the £80,000 it needs to sustain its long-term future.

 Head of services for SWR Mind Sophie Hall said: “We are desperate for donations, however big or small it is not too late to support us. We have been helping people for 50 years now and we can secure our future with your help. As Graham’s experience shows, mental illness does not discriminate whoever you are.”

People can donate to the appeal online via SWR Mind's website www.swrmind.org.uk, its Just Giving page www.justgiving.com/swrmind or by texting SWRM22 with the amount they want to donate in £ to 70070.

They can also send a cheque made payable to Scarborough, Whitby and Ryedale Mind, PO Box 304, Scarborough, YO11 3YJ.

 

 

 

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