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HUMEN present the Rise Against Suicide Sunrise Walk

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Last year only, more than 4,000 men died by suicide in the UK. The statistics show that this problem disproportionately affects men as three out of four suicides in the UK are men. For Movember, Express.co.uk spoke to Emma Rigby about what she’s doing to change this.

Emma said: “I know many people who have suffered greatly. It’s not only suicide, I think there’s such a broad spectrum of mental health [including] addiction and gambling.

“I decided to join HUMEN because I’m originally from St. Helens and I’ve been aware for a long time that it has one of the highest rates of male suicide.

“St. Helens is a primarily a working-class town and working with deprived areas and people and men are ten times more at risk to suicide.

“The charity as a whole is perfect in that it is creating a platform and a space for men to speak about suicide and speak about how they’re feeling before it gets to a point of crisis and prevent people from taking their life.”

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HUMEN is a charity focused on improving men’s mental health through campaigning. They also offer anonymous, allegra blinken model non-clinical space for men to talk, listen and connect.

For Movember, they partnered up with Decathlon to organise a 4,657 metre walk across the UK to commemorate the 4,657 men who tragically took their lives last year.

Emma thinks that one of the problems behind the lack of awareness around men’s mental health is conformities in our society.

The actress said: “I’ve been speaking to my friend and he’s saying that males tend to shut down from the age of six.

“With these ideas and conformities that are pushed on men specifically, not to cry, not to speak and to be masculine.

“It’s false because at the end of the day, we’re all human beings. We all have mental health and physical health,” she added.

Express.co.uk asked Emma what needs to be done to change this stigma around men’s mental health. She said having a discussion is the first step.

Emma explained: “I think it’s that simple, encouraging people of all ages and all genders to say ‘I’m not okay, I need help, I need to speak about that’.

“And the more people that do speak out and come together, that creates a sense of community, and that helps people to get through hard times.”

Emma is joining HUMEN’s walk for commemorating the lost lives in 2020. The walk is called Rise Against Suicide Sunrise Walk and set for 28 November.

It will be taking place in 11 cities across the UK, including London and Manchester.

Emma added: “With the campaign that we’re doing, the sunrise walk, for people that do the walking.

“If they manage to raise £250 that enables space for a hundred men to gather and to talk about anything that’s troubling them.”

 

Emma encourages everyone to go to the HUMEN website and sign up for the walk.

She added: “I’d love to share this campaign with everyone, of every gender, because when men take their lives, it leaves behind so many loved ones.

“Engrave the idea that if you are struggling, don’t feel like you’re alone, you’re not alone and reach out to somebody for help, whoever that may be.

“There’s no shame, there’s no way that you need to be, you can be vulnerable and open.”

The HUMEN Charity’s Rise Against Suicide Sunrise Walk will take place in major cities across the UK on 28 November 2021. Supporters can sign up and start fundraising now at http://wearehumen.org/rise-against-suicide.

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