Vicar from Batley to go bald for mental health charity

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A vicar from Batley is preparing to go bald in aid of a mental health charity,

Martin Naylor, of Batley Parish Church, hopes to raise £500 for PeerTalk - a network of peer support meetings for people who live with depression and their families - by having his head shaved.

Rev Naylor decided to fundraise for the charity after becoming a volunteer facilitator at a local PeerTalk group.

“Research tells us that one in four people experience mental health difficulties in any one year,” he said.

“Depression is very common and any of us - irrespective of age, gender or background - can be affected. The isolation and suffering that comes with depression can be tough as the stigma around it prevents people from seeking support.

“I have seen how a welcoming, non-judgemental setting can make a difference for someone facing depression. It might not make the cause of the depression go away, but it does give you the encouragement to go on, in the knowledge that you’re not alone, and that others understand. Aside from this, those who come along to the support group meetings often offer really sound practical advice, which can help.”

Rev Naylor will undergo the headshave during a parish barbecue on August 25.

Rosa Trelfa, from PeerTalk, said ‘We’re really proud that Martin has decided to make this huge statement in support of what’s available locally to help people through difficult times with their mental health.”

The Batley PeerTalk peer support group runs every Wednesday at Batley Parish Church’s Community Room from 1.30pm to 3pm. To sponsor Rev Naylor visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/RevMartin-Naylor.