Friends to fall from 10,000ft in aid of mental health charity

L-R: Jess Tallis, Dean Mitchell and Ashlei Burgess
L-R: Jess Tallis, Dean Mitchell and Ashlei Burgess

Three friends will be jumping from an aeroplane later this year to raise money for a mental health charity.

Ashlei Burgess, Jessica Tallis and Dean Mitchell, all from Hastings, will skydive from 10,000 feet on September 8 to raise funds, and awareness of Mind.

On a fundraising page, the friends said: “On September 8 we will be throwing ourselves out of a plane at 10,000ft in an effort to raise awareness and money for a cause close to all our hearts. We – Ashlei, Dean and Jess – are good friends and work colleagues that have all experienced or witnessed the effects of mental health first hand; as we believe so many others have too.

“Together we work for a haulage company, John Jempson & Son Ltd. In our industry we feel that mental health issues can go easily unnoticed. This is due to the nature of working alone for extensive periods of time and being away from home.

“Depression, anxiety and loneliness can creep up on anyone at any time, especially when you’re left with your own thoughts for many hours in a day. A lot of drivers tend to be ex-military who have witnessed traumas that not many could imagine or understand. PTSD is a well-known mental illness many ex-servicemen suffer with. We want to encourage people to take others’ wellbeing seriously, as you might just save someone’s life.”

It added: “Our Jempsons family sadly lost an esteemed colleague back in September 2016. The loss of Michael Anthony Bird is still widely felt by all those who were lucky enough to know him.

“Michael was always the life and soul of our yard, with his ‘Brummie’ charm and banter.

“The lack of his presence is still prominent today. A life taken far too soon.

“For more than 60 years Mind has worked to improve the lives of all people with experience of mental health problems. Through public campaigns, Government lobbying and more than 1,000 services our local Minds have delivered in communities across England and Wales, and have touched millions of lives. We have chosen to JUMP for Mind because of the achievements and experiences over their many years with treating and supporting Mental Health.

“We would really appreciate the help and support in raising money and awareness for such an incredible cause.”

For more information or to donate, visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/searchingforcloud9.

For details about Mind, visit www.mind.org.uk/.