£4,209 Total Raised

I was not aware of Rethink Mental Illness during Ivan’s illness, but since discovering them, I’m very impressed with their mission to campaign for the rights of people living with mental illness in the community and I will fundraise to support their programmes.

Celebrating Lives - Ivan's Story 

Ivan died through suicide on 1 May 2022, when he was just 20 and finishing up his first year at Uni in Birmingham.  

Ivan was a bright, popular, fun loving boy who was happiest partying, making his friends laugh, and pushing life to the limits. He had his life in front of him. When he became paranoid and irrational, we thought the partying had got out of hand. But as his paranoia revealed hallucinations and intrusive thoughts, we realised he was very unwell so we sought help. Then the pandemic lock down descended, normal life stopped and paranoias were fuelled. Ivan hated being unwell and thought that a quick meds fix would sort it and he'd be able to figure out everything else himself. Following spells in hospital and support from a caring medical team over 18 months, Ivan set off for Uni, wanting to put his illness behind him. It wasn't all plain sailing, but by Spring 2022, Ivan seemed a lot better and we cautiously planned for a future where he was managing his meds effectively and could regain control of a brighter future.  But, it was not to be, and without warning, he died from suicide on 1 May in Birmingham.   

Losing Ivan was a huge shock to his family and friends.  

Throughout Ivan's illness, we had access to more resources than many and were lucky to have to a wonderful, local NHS Early-Intervention team. However, despite doing everything we thought possible, and taking all the courses on offer to us on what Ivan was going through, we still felt ill-equipped as to how to best guide him and how to help his friends support him.   

Rethink's mission to raise awareness and to support those suffering from psychosis to live their best lives is critical for the many young people facing mental illness diagnoses.