Local runner Elspeth Hoskins is taking part in her first London marathon on Sunday (24 April) to raise funds for the charity PAPYRUS Prevention of Young Suicide.
Her brother David took his own life at just 19 in 2009. “David was a caring, funny and fiercely intelligent boy who shaped my childhood and made me what I am today, but wrestled with mental illness throughout much of his life,” she says.
An Oxford graduate, Elspeth works every day with young people at the Brixton-based youth marketing agency Livity.
PAPYRUS offers help to young people through its HOPELineUK helpline services.
“Being so involved with young people, I realise the huge pressures they can face and I find comfort knowing about the confidential, non-judgemental support that PAPYRUS provides to those who are not coping with life,” Elspeth says.
She is regularly completing 18-mile training runs. “Living and working in the Clapham/Brixton area I always find others out on the run, which is very encouraging and you never feel alone – it also drives you on.”
PAPYRUS chief executive Ged Flynn said: “Suicide is the main cause of death in young people under 35 and we are determined to make known the scale of this social issue.
“Nothing must diminish our resolve to prevent young suicide and enhance the emotional resilience of young people. We are delighted that Elspeth is supporting our work.”
You can support Elspeth.
Between 600 and 800 people between the ages of 15 and 24 take their own lives in the UK each year.
For people under the age of 35, the number of suicides rises to just under 1,600. Three quarters of them are men.
PAPYRUS’ HOPELineUK helpline services enable young people themselves, and those concerned about them, to speak confidentially to trained professionals for practical advice and support call 0800 068 41 41 text 07786 209 697 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.