A young woman is running for a cause close to her heart after she found herself on the cliffs at Beachy Head one day.
Hayley Gibson, of Malling Street, Lewes, is taking part in the Out of the Blue Battle 10k to raise money for Beachy Head Chaplaincy – who set her on the road to recovery.
The 21-year-old said, “It’s extremely close to my heart. I found myself at Beachy Head for the wrong reasons, the Chaplaincy Team came and helped me out and have given me a lot of support – they’re a really brilliant team.
“I’m all better now. These experiences, as horrible as they are, have made me a stronger person. One of the volunteers said to me ‘You are on a journey and this is just a hurdle along the way.’ I can now see myself on the road to recovery from all the support and by getting me in touch with the right people and mostly the time that they have given me to listen.”
Hayley has never done a 10k before. She has started her training this month and plans to go for a run almost every day.
She said, “It’s going to be a real challenge for me but I’m ready to face it with all I’ve got. I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who donates.
“When I now find myself up at Beachy Head I’m there for the good reasons, for the beautiful scenery, the peacefulness, to say a prayer and to sometimes spend a little time with the Chaplaincy team who are a big part of my life now.
“One day I want to volunteer for them, I’m working towards that at the moment. It’s inspirational, they take up their own personal time to volunteer in all weathers, day and night, to help save the lives of people who find themselves at breaking point – people who just need the support and help to get them back on their feet.”
As well as raise money, Hayley hopes she can raise awareness for mental health. She said, “I feel as though mental health is a very little talked about subject and I want to get more people aware and for people to gain a better understanding of it.
“People are sometimes ashamed of their illness and it is invisible to other people unless you tell them.”
The 10k takes place at Ashburnham Place on May 18. Out Of The Blue is a fundraising body in memory of Will Beckett, who took his own life at Beachy Head in January 2013, aged 42.
To donate to Hayley’s fundraiser, visit: www.virginmoneygiving.com/HayleyGibsonbhct and to find out more about Beachy Head Chaplaincy visit: www.bhct.org.uk