0 Cambridge United stadium manager aiming to raise 50k for charity by walking distance from London to Qatar

Cambridge United's stadium manager is aiming to raise £50k for mental health charities by walking the equivalent of the distance from London to Qatar ahead of the 2022 World Cup.

Cambridge United stadium manager and head groundsman Ian Darler and manager Mark Bonner (Image: Cambridge United)

Ian Darler's gruelling 3,229 mile challenge has already brought in £10,000 - just a few days after he embarked on the epic fundraising effort. Kind-hearted Ian is no stranger to charity missions, recently raising £12,075 for mental health helpline Shout through his Million Steps Challenge.

He has spoken out about his experiences with depression and PTSD and said he is eager to continue spreading awareness and raising money for charities focusing on mental health.

He said: "After hitting rock bottom some years ago, I am now thankfully in a much better place and have come through one of the most challenging periods in my life. It is so important to discuss our mental health and to not allow each other to suffer in silence - like I did - which is why I now want to keep the conversation and the fundraising going.

"The statistics surrounding depression, anxiety, loneliness, self-harm and suicide are absolutely frightening. We still have such a long way to go, which is why I would implore everyone who can to play their part and make a donation."

"The Million Steps challenge was a real challenge, but also a very humbling experience and I expect nothing less this time around."

Victoria Hornby, CEO of charity Mental Health Innovations, which powers Shout 85258, said, "We are incredibly grateful to Ian for undertaking such an epic fundraising challenge for Shout by walking to the Qatar World Cup. Every day, we are currently taking 2,400 conversations with children and adults across the UK who are struggling to cope with suicidal thoughts, depression, anxiety, stress, loneliness and much more.

"Every penny raised will enable us to take conversations that could save lives. Thank you Ian and good luck, I can't wait to join you somewhere along the way!"

To donate towards Ian's campaign, visit his fundraising page.

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