A group of interns at Lloyds Bank in the North West Region have taken on the challenge of completing a series of sponsored runs in an effort to raise vital funds for Lloyds Banking Group’s charity partner, Mental Health UK.

The Group and the charity joined forces in January in order to raise awareness of the link between mental health issues and financial difficulties. Lloyds Banking Group aims to raise at least £2 million per year for the duration of the affiliation, while the biggest joint ambition of the partnership is to create a Mental Health and Money Advice Service, the first of its kind, which will offer practical and personal guidance to anybody who is worried about their financial wellbeing as a result of mental illness or vice versa.

A group of interns have successfully completed the first of a series of sponsored 5-kilometre runs taking place at Wythenshawe Park in Sale; The Decathlon Sale Sizzler series. So far they have raised £195.50 from the first run alone, and hope to reach their £500 target by the final organised run on August 17th.

This run was the fourth fundraising event for the group, who previously arranged an ice cream stall, led a Wimbledon-style strawberries & cream event and organised a bake sale in one of the Lloyds Bank branches. Over the last three weeks they have raised an impressive £689.32 – an amount they are pleased with but not ready to settle on. A number of future events have been planned, including a Pick ‘N’ Mix sweets stall, supermarket bag packing, a prize draw and a talk about mental health to be delivered by a member of the Group to highlight the support systems in place for other LBG employees.

The team plan to use these future events to collaborate with their colleagues and members of the public. They hope that the inclusion of these groups will make way for open discussion about the charity partnership and mental health more generally, and plan to highlight the types of support offered by MHUK, thus preventing the advancement of mental health difficulties among LBG employees and beyond.

If you would like to donate, please visit www.JustGiving.com/Group34forMHUK. For more information on Mental Health UK, please call 020 7840 3012. For non-emergency support with mental illness, please call the NHS on 111. For free and impartial money advice, please call the Money Advice Service on 0800 138 7777