5th Dec, 2016

Going to great lengths to raise mental health issue

Evesham Editorial 3rd Mar, 2016 Updated: 20th Oct, 2016

THE TEAM at the Evesham Observer welcomed an intrepid and inspirational visitor when he passed through the county on his way to John O’Groats.

Steve Carr, who is from Swindon, is trekking the 1,000 miles from Land’s End to John O’Groats to raise awareness about mental health and homelessness and paid a visit to our offices in Redditch.

The 39-year-old is the director of Mind Canyon – a Mental Health and Homeless Resource and hopes his venture will inspire people who may be suffering in silence to speak out.

And it’s a cause which is close to his heart. When he was just 15, Steve’s brother was killed in a car crash.

Shortly after Steve’s parents divorced and he was forced to leave home.

He chose not to seek any counselling for the trauma of his brother’s death and admits he masked it with ‘continual debauchery’ of alcohol, cigarettes and drugs.

In his 30s Steve had settled into a job long enough to buy a house and was doing well until he became addicted to cocaine, which almost cost him his life.

Steve writes in his online story: “My habit was costing me £100 a day, I couldn’t stop what I was doing to myself until one day I pushed it too far – with a concoction of drugs, alcohol and legal highs I vowed to kill myself.”

Thankfully Steve survived but battled through a further three attempts at taking his life before emerging on the other side.

He hopes the venture, which he started on February 1 and is expected to take another five weeks to complete, will help others to speak out and get help.

He added: “This venture is not about financial gain – the point is that people don’t have to suffer in silence, asking for help isn’t a weakness, it proves you are strong.”

Steve, who started with just £100 in his pocket, is living off just £3 a day, sleeping in a tent, walking up between 15 and 20 miles a day and carrying a 30kg backpack.

“It’s purely for the purpose of making people aware of the plight of some of our fellow humans,” he added.

Visit www.mindcanyon.com for more information and to support Steve on his journey