Running for the Isle of Wight Youth Trust

Members of the Youth Trust team with the runners

During Mental Health Awareness week, The Mental Health Foundation is spotlighting the importance of physical activity for mental wellbeing, under the banner ‘Movement: Moving more for our mental health’.

The ‘Love Running Tuesday Nighters’, a group with various abilities but all passionate about the benefits of running, gather weekly. Jo Randall, of Love Running in Newport, explained: “Running brings head-space, exercise, companionship, and social engagement. We have volunteer ‘listeners’ in our runs, ready to lend an ear to anyone needing to talk.”

The enthusiastic group isn’t just about running; they’re also committed to giving back by rallying support for the Isle of Wight Youth Trust by taking part in the Isle of Wight Marathon on October 6.

Deb Morley, a foster-carer and team member, highlighted the personal impact: “Isle of Wight Youth Trust has significantly supported the mental health of the children I care for. Contributing to their cause feels like a meaningful way to give back.”

The motivation and communal spirit extend to younger members of the group, like 17-year-old Bella Matthias, and fellow runner, Lucie Dartigues. For Bella, joining the Tuesday Nighters with her mother was a game-changer during the pandemic: “It was fun, relieving stress and improving sleep,” she explained. Lucie finds solace and balance in running, especially with school pressures:

“It helps me unwind and the club keeps me consistent and social.”

You can support the group at iw.observer/tuesdaynighters.