Photojournalism research portfolio

 

A selection of our walk in my shoes research portfolio 

Chris … From that day on x
National Suicide Awareness Prevention
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Chris is one of the loveliest men you could meet, in fact I have him saved in my mobile as just that Lovely Man.
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Chris is also a survivor of attempted suicide and working together with SLP & Upbeat Life, Chris is sharing his story, during National Suicide Awareness Prevention month, in the hope of raising vital insight thru photojournalism.
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Having no prior history of suicidal thoughts, Chris woke up on what he described as one beautiful morning in May 2007, and decided today was the day he didn’t want to be here anymore.
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At that time having been recently diagnosed with MS, he had found himself descending into darkness, suffering with Anxiety and stress. Long hours in the hospitality industry and his then marriage failing, Chris recognised in hindsight his anxiety lead to depression.
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Sadly Chris made an attempt to end his life, by driving to the A130 and unsuccessfully attempting to throw himself under a moving truck.
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Chris survived by pulling back at the last moment, bruised and traumatised having no compassion for himself, only for the lorry driver. The thought of the impact of his attempt on the lorry driver saved his life.
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Chris told me he felt immense guilt and overwhelming emotion, and knew from that day, he would not attempt to do this again.
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He recognised he needed help and drove straight to his GP and was sectioned.
Realising he had hit rock bottom, he successfully sought help through counselling, baring his soul in therapy.
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I am very proud to call Chris my friend, and for his courage in sharing his story.
We both gained a vital insight into what went through his mind on that day in 2007, and by opening up and knowing it’s ok to talk about how you feel, we hope so many more lives can be saved in the future.
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A beautiful man dedicated to @UpbeatLife_uk fighting MS daily to the hilt it was my privilege to record Chris’s story as our first, on our ‘Men Dont Cry’ (A walk in my shoes) suicide prevention & awareness unique photojournalism research programme.
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SAMARITANS: call 116 123 for free, anytime
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CALM (for men) call 0800 58 58 58
from 5pm – midnight, 365 days a year

Marcus … Raw Emotion x
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Marcus lost his mum on August 21st 2016 to suicide …
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Margaret, 58 sadly ended her life by throwing herself under a train at Mile End Station In London.
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She had no mental health condition diagnosis, no debt and had made no previous attempts to do so …
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Marcus told me he had spoken to her the day before she died and she had given him no inclination to how low she was feeling, and her and Marcus had been really close.
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Marcus has now set up his own Instagram page called Don’t Suffer In Silence, and works himself tirelessly as he doesn’t want others to suffer in silence, as his mum clearly had before she passed.
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Marcus and myself, through Street Life People hope to work together in the future to campaign for raising awareness on suicide prevention and all mental health issues.
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Marcus is now also a stand up comedian, and uses his performances to raise awareness, and as a way to channel those raw emotions he feels, a kind of creative therapy …
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Always my friend x
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Link – @dontsufferinsilence1 .
Street Life People …
Giving a voice to everyday people’s stories through photography and journalism, while raising awareness on mental health, domestic abuse and homelessness, all of which are often interlinked in every day life, our communities and society as a whole.
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SAMARITANS 116 123
24hrs, 7 Days A Week
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A 24hr Helpline offering emotional support for people who are experiencing feelings of distress or despair.
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Calm 0800 585858
Campaign And Support For Young Men Aged 15-35 On Issues Which Include Depression And Suicide
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HopeLine UK. 0800 068 4141
For Practical Advice On Suicide Prevention

Chase … Opening up is more than ok …
Suicide prevention & awareness
MENS MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS
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Working with Chase today these words touched my heart to the core, and it’s this kind of raw emotion which will create change in mental health and let others know out there who relate to this, one they are not alone, and two that there is always light at the end of the tunnel during dark times and it’s always ok to express that emotion and reach out for support available when needed.
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I’m Chase Marks, 37 years old and for several years I have fantasised about my own suicide.
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I use the word fantasy to make a strong distinction – I have never attempted suicide or made a detailed plan to do so. But in my daily life I’ve have the unbearable urge to think about it. It took a long time to open up about these thoughts but once I did I realised just how common a bracket I found myself in.
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For me and so many others depression was something I hid behind a huge grin, was the life and soul of the party and the shoulder for others to cry on. But not taking enough time for ourselves catches up with us and the thoughts of suicide eventually become too much to keep a secret.
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My first confession of these thoughts was several years ago. It was a dramatic scene, crying with my partner on the bathroom floor, feeling shamed and fearful of the burden I now placed on her. But looking back now the situation feels so far removed from the couple we are today. That was the lowest I have ever felt, the only way out was truly upwards and a long journey to council my way out of depression and connect with others like myself.
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Because of my bravery on that day it led me to accept and believe that with counselling and perseverance you are able to continue no matter how hard daily life can be and how frequent thoughts become.
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So if you meet someone like me make sure you offer them hope. Help them build something to live for, until the odds against those thoughts are always in their favour. Because I hear those whispers every day and I’m still here.
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SAMARITANS: call 116 123 for free, anytime
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CALM (for men) call 0800 58 58 58
from 5pm – midnight, 365 days a year