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WATCH: Ipswich Town star lends support to RED January mental health campaign

PUBLISHED: 17:19 18 December 2018 | UPDATED: 22:40 18 December 2018

Toto joined Suffolk Mind at Portman Road for the launch of RED January. 

Picture: RACHEL EDGE

Toto joined Suffolk Mind at Portman Road for the launch of RED January. Picture: RACHEL EDGE

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Ipswich Town star Toto Nsiala has shown his support for a new mental health campaign which encourages people to get active every day to help keep away the New Year blues.

Suffolk Mind and Ipswich Town Football Club are joining forces with RED January, a national initiative promoting the positive benefits of physical activity on mental health - particularly in the first month of the year, which can be a tough time for many.

Portman Road hosted an event on Tuesday, December 18 to launch the initiative in Suffolk, inviting some who had already signed up to meet Toto in person.

The Ipswich defender said it was an important campaign for the club to get behind.

He said: “I think it is great how they (the club) have followed it on with this activity with people doing exercises so I am really proud to be involved in this.

Toto Nsiala and Jon Neal, Chief Executive of Suffolk Mind.

Picture: RACHEL EDGEToto Nsiala and Jon Neal, Chief Executive of Suffolk Mind. Picture: RACHEL EDGE

“It’s nice. It’s a nice thing for the club to do.”

In Suffolk and across the UK, figures show one in four people will experience a mental health challenge each year.

Suffolk Mind chief executive Jon Neal said: “It is brilliant to have the club’s support.

“January is traditionally a blue month for many people - Christmas has finished, it’s dark and everyone has spent all their money. Exercise is good for self-esteem, it releases endorphins and reduces stress hormones.

The joint campaign is to raise awareness of mental health throughout January.

Picture: RACHEL EDGEThe joint campaign is to raise awareness of mental health throughout January. Picture: RACHEL EDGE

“It is very important in improving mental health.”

Among those attending the event was Jodie Goolding, who has borderline personality disorder.

She said: “I have suffered with both chronic illness and mental illness since my early teens.

“I haven’t always had the best relationship with exercise over the years - I would either engage in it too much or not do anything at all.

Toto joined Suffolk Mind at Portman Road for the launch of RED January. 

Picture: RACHEL EDGEToto joined Suffolk Mind at Portman Road for the launch of RED January. Picture: RACHEL EDGE

“So I’m doing RED January to give me motivation to maintain a healthy relationship with exercise and to keep moving even during those times where I feel like I can’t leave the house for days.

“During January I will Vlog though the ups and downs of suffering from borderline personality disorder, endometriosis and polycystic kidney disease in order to share my journey and awareness of these illnesses.”

For more information on RED January and to register for free see here.

To follow Jodie’s blog see here.

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