Virtual Runner monthly challenge, May 2020

APP are the chosen charity for Virtual Runner's monthly challenge during May 2020!

Virtual Runner gives you the opportunity to enter virtual races where you can run, walk or cycle anywhere, anytime at your own pace; whether it's a run around your housing estate or on a treadmill in the gym, you can join in practically anywhere in the world!

Challenge yourself to complete 25k, 50k, 100k or 200k distance throughout the month of May 2020. Your challenge will be made up from multiple sessions to achieve your chosen distance but you can do it at your pace. You can choose to run, walk or cycle the distance you have signed up for between 1st – 31st May 2020 and you can mix and match any discipline to achieve your goal.

It costs £8.50 to sign up and a minimum of 20% donation will be donated to Action on Postpartum Psychosis.

Once completed, you just submit your results online and upload proof that you have completed the distance or challenge using app screenshots or park run stats and they'll send you a cool medal!

To find out more and sign up for APP's month of May 2020 click here

Or, you can watch the Virtual Runner video below:

Virtual Runner Short VT from Lee Davey on Vimeo.

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Irene's Ghost screening in Walthamstow!

Thank you to our fab supporter, Elizabeth, who is hosting a special screening of the film Irene's Ghost at 1:30pm on Saturday 7th September in Walthamstow, London, in aid of APP!

Elizabeth says: "I was privileged to see a screening of Irene's Ghost at the BFI where the Director, Iain Cunningham did a Q&A. This powerfully evocative film impacted me greatly and I wanted to help others see it too!

The screening will be at 1.30pm on Saturday 7th September at Mirth, Marvel and Maud, E17 4QH and is just a 2 minute walk from Walthamstow Central tube station. The building is Grade II* listed and houses a pub, cinema and cultural centre. It is famous for having been frequented by Alfred Hitchcock and for being built on a site where films were shown as early as 1896.

The event runs from 1.30 to 3.30pm and will be followed by a Q & A session with APP."

Tickets are now on sale here priced at £9, which includes booking fee and donation to APP.

Mirth, Marvel and Maud

Irene's Ghost is a must-watch film for anyone with an interest in mental health but even for those who don't, it is a beautiful, moving portrayal of the intricacies of family life and the impact of the things we don't discuss.

The film was recently listed as one of the best films of 2019 by The Guardian! Click here to read the article in full.

You can also read APP Director, Dr Jess Heron's interview with Irene's Ghost Director, Iain Cunningham here.

With special thanks to Elizabeth for hosting this screening; we look forward to seeing you all there!

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Emma and her mum complete 25k in Brecon Beacons!

Congratulations to Emma and her mum who completed the 25K Trekfast walk in the Brecon Beacons on Saturday 6th July, and raised almost £500 in aid of APP - amazing!

Emma said "I am delighted to say we completed it, and though it was tough going we enjoyed it and knowing we were doing it for such a worthy cause kept us going! The challenge included a very tough pull up the twin summits of Pen y Fan 886m and corn du taking us around 7.5 hours and nearly 45000 steps! Thank you so much for all your support through the run up to the challenge, it does feel like a real achievement."

And it looks like they had a fantastic day:

You can still donate via their GoFundMe page here.

Thank you so much to Emma and her mum, an incredible achievement and amazing support of the charity!

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Kelly and Robert to run 10k in Thetford Forest!

A big Thank You to Kelly and her husband, Robert, who are taking part in the 10K Forestry Race in Thetford Forest on 6th October, in aid of APP and the National Autistic Society!

The Forestry 100 Running series is a unique 10k running series through the forests of England to celebrate 100 years of Forestry Commission England. What a great way to raise funds for both charities!

Kelly says: "What better way to celebrate our anniversary than a walk in the park? Well how about a run in the forest? ... the 10 year 10K!! With our anniversary coming up (celebrating 10 years of marriage & 18 years as a couple), we, (OK, I, yes this crazy idea has Kelly written all over it but Robert is the best husband & is going with it) decided to set ourselves a challenge and have entered a 10KM race at High Lodge, Thetford Forest on 6th October 2019.

We are raising money for 2 charities very close to our hearts. (All donations to be split equally) Firstly, Action on Postpartum Psychosis: Before we welcomed our wonderful Donal into this world back in 2011 we had never even heard of postpartum psychosis (aka puerperal psychosis). They say having a baby turns your world upside down & it really did in the most terrifying way possible.

I very quickly became very severely unwell, so much so that when he was just 10 days old I was sectioned which meant I was taken away from my newborn baby & husband,against my will, to a psychiatric hospital for urgently needed treatment. It wasn’t just terrifying and devastating for us but also for our parents & siblings. Thankfully a space in a mother & baby unit (MBU) soon became available & I was reunited with baby D & could begin recovery. It was not easy for anyone but I had the most wonderful baby boy, the most loving & supportive husband & wonderful family around us. The MBU & the other mums I met there were fantastic & I was soon doing well enough to return home.

Sadly, 2.5 years later I found myself re-admitted to the same MBU, this time voluntarily having already tried battling this awful illness 2nd time around at home. This time was even harder as our family was split in 2. Charlie & I in the MBU & Donal split between home with Robert & spending time at both grandparents’ homes. They spent as much time as possible with us at the hospital but it was really hard for us all.

Thankfully I bounced back a 2nd time. There are so many people to thank for my recovery: family, friends, professionals, particularly the staff & patients from Rainbow 🌈 (the MBU).

APP also played an important role in my recovery once back home. Helping me feel less isolated & letting me know there was a light at the end of the tunnel. Through APP I even befriended & offered support and encouragement to another Mum which I think was as much a benefit & comfort to me as it was to her.

APP are also key in helping spread awareness both in general & amongst professionals which is so, so, SO, important. The earlier the intervention with pp, the greater chance of success in treating it.

We ALL need to know the warning signs & when to ask for help. I was never a danger to my babies but in the early days after having Donal I was skilled at hiding how unwell I was & I did it out of fear of being separated from him. Robert & my family quickly could see things weren’t right but they really struggled to get the right help fast as they didn’t know what was happening. I remember at the antenatal class we went to the dads were all warned to look out for postnatal depression, but no mention was made of psychosis & the warning signs are very different. So there we have it, the illness tried to destroy me & my family twice but we made it!!

Secondly, The National Autistic Society: As most people reading this probably already know our amazing little Charlie Bear was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder in June 2016. We wouldn’t change him for the world but his condition brings daily challenges.

We participated the early bird programme which is organised by the National Autistic Society. This helped us better understand the world from Charlie’s point of view and gave us more tools & strategies to help him (& us) cope with the challenges of daily life with ASD. It was also an opportunity to meet a great group of people in a similar situation to share ideas, learn from each other & just offer encouragement, support & friendship to one another.

Well if you made it to the end of all that you deserve a medal! Sorry, I’ve never been good at keeping it short. But these are the reasons we would be so grateful for every single penny we can raise for these 2 charities."

Thank you so much to Kelly and Robert for your hard work in training and support of APP, it is hugely appreciated by us all and we wish you the best of luck!

You can donate to their Virgin Money Giving page here.

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Thank you Llanrhidian Primary School!

Thank you to Llanrhidian Primary School and the parents who donated so many fantastic items for the Grand Charity Sale, which took place on Sunday 16th June at Llanmorlais Village Hall. The sale raised £550 in aid of APP, which is just amazing!

Heather said: "It was well attended and so many local mums helped to make it a lovely community event. We thank them all for their support, for their donations and for their hard work in setting up, clearing up, and for baking loads of yummy cakes."

Thank you to everyone who donated items and helped support the sale on the day!

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North Wales Perinatal Mental Health Team climb Snowdon!

Huge congratulations to the North Wales Perinatal Mental Health Team who, along with colleagues and friends, successfully climbed Snowdon on Saturday 22nd June and have raised over £1,250 for APP and PANDAS!

Despite lots of sore legs and hips they all reached the summit in good time surrounded by lots of blue sky and sunshine - a real treat, as we've been informed that the top of Snowdon is usually covered in cloud so, they were graced with some amazing, breathtaking views!

What an incredible achievement - well done all!

You can still donate via their Virgin Money Giving page here.

APP say a very big THANK YOU to everyone who took part and completed this amazing feat in aid of APP and PANDAS - we are so grateful for your hard work and support of APP, we really couldn't do this without you!

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Raechel to run the Windsor Half!

We say Thank You to Raechel, who will be running the Windsor Half Marathon on 29th September in aid of APP!

Raechel decided to fundraise after suffering with Postpartum Psychosis in 2018 and receiving peer support help from APP.

Raechel says: "In January 2018, 5 months after the birth of our daughter Aoife, I was diagnosed with Postpartum Psychosis. A cruel albeit rare mental illness which affects 1-2 women out of a 1000 births. It was quite possibly the most traumatic experience of my life and came as a huge shock, especially given that I had no history of post natal mental illness from my previous two pregnancies. 

During my episode of Postpartum Psychosis I experienced severe mood fluctuations from feeling incredibly high (mania) to extreme lows. I had terrifying hallucinations both visual and auditory (hearing voices) combined with racing thoughts, delusions and paranoia. My senses of smell, sight and taste were also heightened and I hardly slept. My brain literally went awol and I lost touch with reality.

Little is known on what causes an episode but what is known, is that biological, hormonal, previous traumas, sleep deprivation and stress play a part in the development of the condition.

I am pleased to say that I have been symptom free from the psychosis for over a year now.  I do however face a daily battle of depression, anxiety of going into relapse, and social anxiety which is sadly an after effect from an episode - recovery is slow and frustrating at times. It is like your whole personality has been stripped from you and it takes time to rebuild your confidence.

I have been extremely lucky to have received the best treatment and care from the perinatal and early intervention teams in Wokingham and to have the most supportive and caring family, friends and a wonderful husband who did not give up hope that I would eventually come round and start to get better. Some women are not so lucky...

APP provide a vital lifeline to women and families that have experienced Postpartum Psychosis. A safe space to connect with fellow sufferers and carers, so they do not feel isolated. They are there for sufferers that may not have the access to the care they need, and provide great support as most of their volunteers have suffered PP themselves. They do incredible work for raising awareness and to silence the stigma. They are also involved in research, so the condition and it's causes can be understood even further. 

Running has played a major part in my recovery, so it seemed quite fitting for me to do a run and raise some money for this amazing charity.  It's been a difficult time but I can proudly say that I survived and many more women will be given hope that they will  survive and get better too.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read.  Donations however large or small, whatever you can spare,  will be gratefully received."

Please visit her JustGiving page here and donate what you can.

Thank you so much Raechel and we hope the training goes well over the next couple of months!

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Kat completes the Kiltwalk!

A big Thank You to Kat who walked 23 miles in the Glasgow Royal Bank of Scotland Kiltwalk on Sunday 28th April and raised over £500 in aid of APP - amazing!

Kat chose to support APP as she says: "For anyone who knows me this charity and its cause have been a major influence and passion of mine throughout my nursing career. This has only increased in my new amazing role as a Perinatal Mental Health Nurse. Action on Postpartum Psychosis support women and families affected by Postpartum Psychosis (PP). PP is a severe mental illness which begins extremely suddenly following childbirth. In the UK, just over 1400 women each year experience PP."

Kat said she had so much fun taking part that she plans to do it again next year for APP, which would be amazing - Thank you Kat!

Kat and her friend who supported the British Heart Foundation

Thanks to Kat and to everyone who supported her and donated to APP - we couldn't do this with you.

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Snowdonia walk for perinatal charities

The North Wales Perinatal Mental Health Team are coming together with colleagues, friends and representatives of lived experience, including APP Training Coordinator, Sally Wilson, to walk up Snowdonia on the 22nd of June, in aid of APP and PANDAs!

They say: "The aim of this is to raise awareness of perinatal mental health, and raise funds for charities that support women and families affected by perinatal mental illness. Our chosen charities are PANDAs who provide pre and postnatal depression advice and support and APP who support women and families affected by postpartum psychosis. Any donations will be very much appreciated, to help these wonderful charities to continue supporting women and families affected by perinatal mental illness."

Please visit their Virgin Money Giving page here and donate what you can.

A big Thank You to everyone taking part - we hope the sun shines and you have a fantastic walk on 22nd June!

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Grand Charity Sale in Llanmorlais Village Hall!

A big Thank You to the team putting on a 'Grand Charity Sale' at Llanmorlais Village Hall on Sunday 16th June in aid of APP and Llanrhidian Primary School!

The Grand Charity Sale is on from 10am until 3pm on Sunday 16th June, at Llanmorlais Village Hall, Swansea, SA4 3TZ. There'll be lots of items on sale including a variety of fab gifts (Father's Day is fast approaching!) plus cakes, bakes, and a variety of refreshments as well as clothes and all sorts!

They say: "Come and join us to support APP & Llanrhidian Primary School. All proceeds to be divided equally between our two organisations. If you have items to donate to the sale:
Please bring them to Llanmorlais Village Hall on Saturday 15th June from 10.30am til 3pm or contact Heather Heron to arrange to drop them off beforehand. Or buy your own table to sell your wares (second hand clothes & toys, cakes, farm produce etc, £25 per table, contact Heather Heron: 07866265696).If you: are willing to bake cakes, scones, biscuits to sell; can donate tea, coffee, milk, squash, donate a bottle or Father’s Day tombola gift; or if you can help on the  day, please get in touch!"

For more information click here for the Facebook event page.


With big thanks to everyone involved - we hope you have a fantastic day!

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