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Guildford mental health charity calls on people to run 17 miles in a week

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Guildford mental health charity calls on people to run 17 miles in a week

Published at 6:00am 8th July 2020.

A mental health charity in Guildford is encouraging people to join in their new fundraising campaign and run 17 miles in a week while being sponsored.

Side With 17 has been set up to raise money for Oakleaf Enterprise during the coronavirus pandemic, as well as awareness of mental health issues.

The campaign will be running from 20 to 26 July, with a Zoom yoga class taking place mid-week to thank participants and bring a "sense of community" to the challenge.

Participants can choose their own route, whether it is local roads, trails or a treadmill.

Jen Clay, the charity's fundraising and partnership manager, told Eagle Radio about why they chose the number 17:

"Every week, approximately 17 per cent of people will experience a common mental health problem.

"We want to raise awareness about the high number of people who do struggle with their mental health, but also raise vital funds for Oakleaf.

"We already have seen an increase in referrals.

"For example, in May we saw a 60 per cent increase in referrals on from the same time in 2019 which is huge and we just expect that to increase, especially as lockdown eases.

"For us, it is about encouraging better physical health because it is so well connected to mental health.

"So that is certainly another reason to get people onboard Side With 17."

Those wanting to take part can register their interest on the charity's website and set up a Virgin Money Giving page.

People are encouraged to share their journey on social media and tag @_Oakleaf .