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Inverness based mental health charity has two new ambassadors from the music industry

By Neil MacPhail

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Callum Beattie, Emily Stokes, Allana Stables, Dave Rogers - Photographed by Wonder Years Portrait Photography
Callum Beattie, Emily Stokes, Allana Stables, Dave Rogers - Photographed by Wonder Years Portrait Photography

Scottish musical star Callum Beattie and manager Dave Rogers have been appointed as the newest ambassadors of Highland mental health charity Mikeysline.

Having both lost loved ones to suicide, Callum and Dave are championing Inverness based Mikeysline’s Bee the Change campaign aimed at challenging the current dialogue and stigmas surrounding mental health and suicide.

In honour of this new role, Edinburgh born Callum will also be releasing a special charity single for Mikeysline this summer.

He said: “We both share such a strong connection with the Highlands and becoming Mikeysline ambassadors allows us to deepen those roots.

“A lot of the lyrics I write are about mental health and I find the process of songwriting very therapeutic – essentially it’s about taking your thoughts and feelings, putting them on paper and transforming them with a melody.

“I work in an industry where mental health is discussed, but action is rarely taken. That’s why I’m passionate about getting to the root cause of why people struggle in silence with mental health issues, and do my part to help make a change.

“Our mental health is all we have – the ability to have clear and positive thoughts is the foundation of everything we do.”

Having recently paid a visit to local businesses and schools that are supporting Mikeysline’s ‘Bee the Change’ campaign in their communities, Callum and Dave both shared their admiration for the work happening across the Highlands and their enthusiasm to play their part.

Dave added: “When I first met Callum I asked him, ‘What do you want to be known for?’ and he replied, ‘I want to be known for someone who did some good.’ So here we are.

“So much of what Callum and I do is to help others – that's where the real rewards come from. For the past three years we’ve been offering support to charities and causes close to our hearts and we are delighted to join Mikeysline as ambassadors.

“Music is a wonderful thing that allows us to connect with people around the world. It can inspire, it can change lives, and it can heal – we hope this is something we can bring to those in need of all three.”

Mikeysline’s Bee the Change campaign, launched on World Suicide Prevention Day last September, incorporates the charity’s former community champion and youth champion programmes, bringing all community outreach under the same umbrella. It’s mission is to make mental health and suicide prevention services more accessible across the Highlands and Islands, whilst challenging the dialogue around mental health.

Mikeysline’s chief executive Emily Stokes said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have Callum and Dave joining our team as ambassadors.

“Both passionate advocates for mental health, it was wonderful to have them come along and meet with the teams and individuals at the heart of their communities working to Bee the Change for those in their areas.

“All of us can Bee the Change by challenging the stigma and barriers that prevent people from being able to reach out for support when they most need it, as well as changing the ways in which we talk about and respond to these issues.

“We are incredibly grateful for all that our wonderful ambassadors do and we’re excited to see what Callum and Dave bring to the organisation.”

Since 2015, Mikeysline has offered confidential, non-judgemental support to people of all ages dealing with mental health issues, emotional distress or thoughts of suicide in the Highlands, Islands and Moray. It does this via a text line service at 07786 207755; WhatsApp at 01463 729000, messenger and via its website and live chat.

The charity also produces a popular podcast, Speaking of Suicide; provides support for businesses; works closely with teachers and pupils in schools across the north of Scotland; and offers face-to-face support in Hives across the region – at its Inverness headquarters, and in Alness, Nairn, Tain, Balintore and Portmahomack.

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