Bazz's Facebook Fundraiser

Bazz decided to celebrate his 49th and 50th birthdays by holding two Facebook fundraisers for us. He has shared his story to encourage others to do the same!

Why did you choose to fundraise for the Mental Health Foundation?

Mental health is one of those things we all have and many have been affected by. The mind is no different to a car. Both experience some faults occasionally and need diagnosing and often action. If your car was playing up you wouldn’t just carry on as normal, would you?

I have personally lost several work colleagues, acquaintances and good friends, to suicide within the last 18 months – most within a year of my age. Most, if not all were probably avoidable, so I decided – enough is enough.

Whilst we all love receiving a little attention on our birthdays, I would rather have my ‘nearest and dearest’ around me. That is why I decided to raise awareness, whenever I can, so that people understand “it’s ok not to be ok” and that my door is always open – metaphorically and physically.

Instead of a card, present, or pint on my birthday I have asked my social media friends to donate to the Mental Health Foundation. This helps raise overall awareness, but also provides vital funds to amplify the message.

We all put on a brave face, smile and joke with those around us, but do we truly know what is going on in each other’s lives? Just being there to listen and supporting someone in need is far more important than a birthday card or meaningless gift… This is why I would encourage everyone to simply start a Facebook fundraiser and ask friends for donations!

How did you go about organising and promoting your Facebook fundraiser? I.e. how easy was it to set up, did you promote it on other channels etc?

Simple. I merely set up a donation page and linked it to my Facebook page, then talked openly to my friends and associated about my experience and personal loss. The Mental Health Foundation also has some amazing tips on how to promote the fundraiser too.

Many sent personal messages about their experiences, which was very telling. 

Tell us about the Facebook fundraiser itself – how did it go? 

I have been doing this for two years now and through extreme generosity of others I have raised in excess of £1,000 for such a great cause. I hope others do the same. It takes five minutes to set up and makes a big difference to charities like the Mental Health Foundation.