Students from the Liverpool John Moores University cricket team have started a running club in a bid to support people dealing with mental health issues.  

The idea was formed after a month-long fundraiser through November of last year in support of men’s health.  

For Movember, the team completed a 5km run every day throughout the month whilst inviting others to join them, along with other activities such as a charity quiz, waxing and a marathon walk from Wrexham AFC’s stadium to Hamilton Square. 

Cricket team after marathon walk
LJMU Cricket team following their marathon walk.

In total the Rangers raised £5632 and following such a resounding success, they decided to continue with their efforts by establishing a brand-new running club.  

The initiative has been spearheaded by two members of the cricket team.  

Miles Craven, 20, from Leeds, explained what inspired him to come up with the idea. 

“There’s such a stigma currently in the world about men’s mental health or mental health in general for women as well. Having the ability to have an influence on the people around me, on social media, around the city of Liverpool and back home in Leeds – to talk to people, to encourage people to listen, to check up on friends, is so valuable to me.” 

“I think highlighting the things that we have has really paid dividends for some people’s mental health. Sometimes, the smallest change can get people down so we’re trying our best to get behind people and support the people in our network.” 

At the final 5km run in November, over 60 people attended, with over 100 people involved throughout the month.  

Students running
Students taking part in the running club on Copperas Hill.

The Yorkshire-man expressed how the successes of their Movember campaign spurred the lads on to continue with their work.  

“On the last run, we had an absolutely massive turnout. In the middle of Liverpool, everyone got together, running round – it was absolutely incredible really.” 

“We sat and discussed ideas, trying to come up with new things but we decided to invest time into putting a running club together. We want to continue with the running, getting people involved and get everyone working towards personal goals.” 

“It’s just a really good excuse to get everyone involved once again.” 

The club gets together every Tuesday outside the Student Life Building on Copperas Hill and although the project is run by the LJMU cricket team, anyone is welcome to come along and join in. 

Josh Darley, 21, from Oswestry and the co-founder of the initiative, talked about how much he is enjoying getting active in the name of mental health. 

“It’s very fulfilling. The adrenaline gets flowing, everyone runs together as a group which is nice. Obviously, there is a mix of abilities, but everyone sticks together and it’s a nice environment which is the main thing.” 

Final Movember run
The gathering of students after the final 5km run in November

Darley was clear about the message he hopes the club will send out.  

“I think as men we kind of push our problems to the side and battle through – sometimes it can be good to have a strong mindset but sometimes you do need to open up and talk.” 

“Talking is the main part, if you do have a struggle, mentally or physically – it’s about opening up and tackling things together.” 

With the launch of the running club getting off to a success, the two cricket players are hoping to continue the battle against mental health issues throughout the year.