Daniel Kelsey has seen the changes in attitudes to men’s mental health.
The Tongala-born Kyabram resident has been a regular around football clubs, seeing how blokes act.
“For a long time there was still the ‘suck it up’ nature where we didn’t talk about how we are feeling,” Kelsey said.
“But in the past 10 — really the past five — years that’s changed for the better.
“People are opening up to each other, they’re having the tough conversations and learning to express ourselves and how we feel.
“It’s great that things are changing, but when you start having conversations with people you realise there is still so much to be done.”
On average, nine people take their own life in Australia each week, with seven of them being men.
Now, Kelsey is taking the task of reducing that statistic on himself with the goal of raising some money for mental health causes through Blokes United, but mostly awareness.
And he will do it by pounding the pavement.
For the next 42 weeks of his life, Kelsey will be running for the cause, aiming for 42km (the equivalent of a marathon) every week, with his final run on Friday, November 19 coinciding with International Men’s Health Day.
“I’m really looking forward to the challenge,” he said.
“But I know it’s going to be challenging as well, not only physically as well, being able to push through the hurdles every day when it gets tough and you don’t want to be out there.
“But I’m really looking forward to going through this challenge every day.
“Hopefully I’m able to raise a bit of money for the cause.
“But the key thing for me is about getting people talking. We’ve come a long way in the past few years, but we have so much further to go and hopefully I can get some more people to have those conversations.”
● To donate to Daniel’s GoFundMe, head to search “Daniel Kelsey run 42km for 42 weeks” on the GoFundMe page.
● For crisis support or if you know someone who is struggling, contact Lifeline: 13 11 14 or lifeline.org.au Beyond Blue: 1300 224 636 or beyondblue.org.au Kids Helpline: 1800 551 800 or kidshelpline.com.au Headspace: 1800 650 890 or headspace.org.au