‘No Boundaries’ for cricketers in pursuit of mental health awareness

By Ollie Godden

Cricket is the only sport that spans five days, only for a draw to be declared at the end of play. An alien concept to non-traditionalist cricket fans, the sport has an enticing ability to keep the spectators captivated for hours. However, Hatfield student Ben Gould is looking for cricketing captivation of a different kind, namely in the form of a world record-breaking marathon match, lasting 48 hours.

In aid of PAPYRUS, the national charity dedicated to the prevention of young suicide, the indoor event ‘No Boundaries’ will take place at Durham School on 12th-14th February. With suicide the leading cause of young deaths, PAPYRUS exist to listen, support, and guide young people with mental health issues who are thinking of committing suicide.

The event itself will rely entirely on volunteers across the spectrum of roles from players to videographers and everything in between, while all equipment will be donated by willing helpers. The event’s Twitter and Facebook pages, ‘noboundarieswr’, offer more information for anyone keen to help.

There are a number of ways to help out from volunteering, raising awareness and, most importantly, donating. Funds are already flooding in on the JustGiving page which is well on its way to the £500 target. A quiz night held at Hatfield last Sunday further bolstered the fundraising efforts weeks before the start of the game.

Gould explained to Palatinate he wanted to use sport to raise money for PAPYRUS because making sport more sensitive to mental health issues will help people engage in camaraderie-inducing activities.

“We are aiming to bring together people from the university, local sports clubs and wider community”, he said. “We will be running a raffle, selling t-shirts and other activities over the 48 hours and everyone is welcome. There are some exciting additions, which are yet to be announced, too.”

Gould went on to announce the exceptional support the project has received thus far. “The support from a variety of people has been exceptional”, he continued, “we’ve got ex-students taking days off work to come up from London, [we’ve] had some great support from local businesses, especially in regard to raffle prizes and merchandise printing and from organisations such as Durham County Cricket Club”.

He admits the logistics of running the event can be tricky as there are so many components to the organisation. However, the support network seems to be making the task much easier.

There seems to be no doubt in Gould’s mind that the Durham community can continue to come together to support the project and the great cause behind it.

Photograph: Ed g2s via Wikimedia Commons

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