Toughing it out for Mental Health

When Scott Campbell attended our Mental Health Breakfast earlier this year, he was moved to do more than just talk. He decided to do something about mental health in his community. 100 days later, he was at the start line of Canada’s Toughest Mudder in Whistler, B.C. with 240 other competitors, after having raised $3,000 for Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation in Edmonton while preparing for the event.

His contribution will change lives—not only because of the funds provided, but also due to his efforts to make mental health a community responsibility.

I think every single person knows someone who’s been affected by mental illness. By supporting the Foundation, you are giving back. It may not be directly to that one person, but you are making a difference. You are making it easier for the many others suffering from mental illness.

Scott began his journey with a simple idea: saying yes to more things in 2017, and finding a way to help other people in the process. He found inspiration in patient advocate Tim Hay’s speech on depression, and launched a campaign to raise funds while he got fit for his competition. He collaborated with leaders in the fitness community to host fundraising events that blended physical wellness and mental wellness.

These events included a boot camp with FREE Fitness, a stair run with Jordan Jeske, and a CrossFit Movement Lab. The events saw between 25-80 people and raised up to $500 each. “The fitness community is a tight-knit group, like a family. They came out to the fundraisers to get their sweat on, but they also opened their wallets”

Scott also has personal reasons for launching his campaign: “One of my closest friends battles with anxiety, and he’s so close to winning that battle. He’s made his mental health such a huge priority.” Scott believes being physically active was a particularly positive force in his friend’s life, which made his goal of raising money for mental health a good fit with his physical training. “When you’re doing something positive for yourself, you begin to think positive.”

After months of hard work, Scott powered through 25 miles of harsh terrain with his partner Coleman. Beginning at midnight, the duo completed intense physical obstacles along a 5-mile lap. The two endured 8 hours of mud and cold, depending on each other for support to complete each task.

“The finish line is only as far as you can take yourself,” participants were told just prior to starting the 8 hour race. Scott confirmed this very fact throughout his campaign; he refused to limit his impact to himself, and instead inspired his community to participate in a good cause.

The distance Scott covered qualifies him for the World’s Toughest Mudder, something he hopes to tackle next year. “This experience was everything I expected and more,” says Scott. “The level of love and support I received was incredible, and I know that—as a growing organization—the Mental Health Foundation will benefit greatly from my support.”

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