A YOUNG woman whose boyfriend took his own life after suffering from depression is setting up a mental health charity.

Emma Greatrex, 25, of Skipwith, has founded Together Opening Minds, which is awaiting charitable status and aims to raise awareness of the prevalence of mental health problems and to fund more mental health nurses in the area.

Emma’s boyfriend Thomas John*, a company director, died last year at the age of 28 having begun to suffer from mental health problems.

She and a team of friends have taken part in a 15,000-foot skydive to raise nearly £3,000 for the fund.

Emma said: “Sadly, this is just one of a plethora of stories that are contributing to ever-increasing figures every year.

“Be this from mild depression to an acute mental illness, but when the world loses a chap like Tom, then it’s time to make a change.

“Depression in men is not necessarily the issue; it’s getting people to talk about their problems that is. No-one should suffer in silence – and this is where we come in.

“We plan to bring this issue to the forefront of people’s awareness, and demonstrate that we all have a part to play in eradicating this problem.

“We want people to talk about their issues be them minor or something that affects their everyday life.”

Tom, who was known for being very sociable and outgoing, had become withdrawn and showed other symptoms of depression.

Days before Tom died, he started to open up to his parents and Emma and began to take steps rectify some of the issues that he was experiencing but very tragically committed suicide soon afterwards.

The charity hopes people will share their own experiences of mental health problems to help raise acceptance and awareness of the prevalence of such problems.

Visit www.togetheropeningminds.com

Other funds have been raised through donations and events at Saks in York and the Drovers Arms in Skpwith.

* Not his full name