Our Successes

Our successes record what and how we are doing against the goals we have set out supporting our drive towards ‘talking’ communities that are suicide safe and enabling young people to choose a different path. Click the items below to read more about our successes – why we undertook each item and what we achieved.

The Wellbeing Libraries in local schools

The Will Garvey Trust Foundation website

Ilkeston RUFC mental health awareness sessions

WTF-created videos to support those in difficult times

First WTF Research report available

Charlie Waller Memorial Trust training for WTF team

WTF’s own awareness sessions (networking)

Mental health first aider training 

Donations to CALM and Papyrus

Wellbeing libraries in local schools

Activity purpose: This activity is supporting our goals in schools to raise awareness of mental health issues and to signpost young people to information, resources and support.


Outcome: It is our intention to provide a mental health library for each secondary school in our local area, so that information a young person might need is readily available and easily accessible for them. We aim to add our voice to the clamour advocating the normalisation of mental health by providing a range of leaflets on topics such as making friends, losing someone you care about, transition at Year 7 and 11, depression, anxiety, and self harm. We believe in the power of the story too and will be providing a range of fiction texts that explore mental health and well-being as well (A Monster Calls, The Illustrated Mum, The Perks of Being a Wall flower for example).

To build our libraries, we are working alongside The Institute of Mental Health, other professionals, and schools, to curate, select and update the range of reading materials that we agree will be appropriate for students in secondary schools across Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire.  

So far we have successfully placed Wellbeing libraries in 7 schools.

We have placed libraries in seven local secondary schools. They are:

St John Houghton catholic school 

Heanor Gate Science college

Kirk Hallam Community Academy

Granville Academy

Lees Brook community school

Bennerley Fields

Kirk Hallam Sixth Form

Coming very soon: Ilkeston Ormiston Academy, Broomfield Hall, Derby College and EMA Training Derby

Each one is managed by designated school staff and works with a liaison representative from the Will Garvey Trust Foundation to ensure that the most effective use of the library is achieved.

Feedback so far has been rewarding but there are always challenges to get new concepts like this fully utilised and we are working with the schools to ensure that the libraries are appropriately stocked and used by those in need.

Latest news (March 2024):

Kirk Hallam Academy have set up a Wellbeing Group that meets regularly to explore ways they can raise awareness and improve the emotional wellbeing of students. The Wellbeing Library itself is to be moved: it’s new home will be in the main school library where all students will have easy access to the library.

Granville Academy’s Wellbeing Group have just received a new set of books to add to their existing collection. This was to address the issues faced by students in that particular setting. Bereavement and anxiety are topics that were requested. Students in the Wellbeing Group have each taken a book and will be writing a review. Watch this space for their recommendations.

The Wellbeing Group at Lees Brook Academy are in the process of creating a film that will show how the WTF Wellbeing Library is being used to support students. We’re really excited to see this and will share as soon as we can. Thank you to staff and students at Lees Brook for their support in this project.

Our WTF website is up and running, offering support to those in need

Our WTF website is up and running, offering guidance to those in need

Our Will Garvey Trust Foundation website

Activity purpose: The WTF website supports our goal to raise awareness of mental health issues and to explain the role our charity seeks to undertake. The website also addresses our goal to improve access to information for young people experiencing mental health issues and those people who care for young people by signposting resources to help those seeking support.

Outcome: Our website is up and running !

We are targeting three audiences with our website.

1. Those wanting to find out about the Will Garvey Trust Foundation (WTF) 

2. Those looking for support to help themselves 

3. Those looking for support to help someone else 

Recent partnership with Samaritans in reviewing our ‘support’ page sections has been so valuable. 

To read more about our target audiences and Samaritans involvement, open the twistie below. 

1. Those wanting to find out about WTF : perhaps simply inquisitive about who we are, why we are here and what we do or perhaps people who want to get involved with us in some way – donating, raising funds, using AmazonSmile or Easyfundraising, volunteering or partnering with us in some form. 

2. Those looking for support to help themselves : for whom we seek to present useful information about looking after themselves generally, as well as information in various formats – reading, listening, watching, apps, websites –  that may help them in their current state and most importantly, contact points to ‘talk’ with others who are well positioned to provide specific help to them.

3. Those looking for support to help someone else : not only information about how to engage with those they are concerned about but also important guidance on looking after themselves too.

Groups 2 and 3 as specified above, are supported in our current phase with signposting to useful information/resources covering a range of suicide prevention, mental health and mental fitness topics. And we are determined to offer even more targeted signposting regarding different ‘feelings’ being experienced, in a later phase of our work on the website.

We are also very pleased to inform you that Samaritans have worked with us and reviewed our website’s ‘support’ pages. Their gracious support for what we have done and their insightful improvement recommendations (which we have now completed) make us feel energised and motivated to ensure that our ‘support’ pages will always offer premium content to those in need of appropriate advice and guidance (and in the right format) to address the challenges they face. 

Ilkeston RUFC mental health awareness sessions (Part 1)

Ilkeston RUFC mental health awareness sessions (Part 1)

Activity purpose: This activity is supporting our goals to work with “groups/clubs” and raise awareness of mental health issues and to signpost young people to information, resources and support

Outcome: The awareness sessions with all the age groups at Ilkeston RUFC have been very successful.  Players of all ages have learned about the importance of self care, about the need to think about the language we use that stigmatises mental health, and know what resources, advice and support are available to them, their friends and their family. 

This season, 2019-20, we have partnered with Ilkeston Rugby Club to improve awareness of mental health and well-being and to challenge the stigma that prevents people from accessing the timely and appropriate support, advice and guidance they need.

We have worked alongside players and coaches to improve attitudes to mental health and wellbeing and to empower young people in particular to seek the help, support or advice they need in improving their own outcomes and in preventing crisis.

We have been made so welcome at The Stute, home of Ilkeston Rugby Club, it’s fast becoming our home from home. Sessions have been incredibly successful already, (we’ve worked with U15s all the way up to the Seniors so far) with feedback showing 100% satisfaction with the information we are providing, and the way in which we deliver it. 

The attitude, involvement and interest shown by the players has certainly re-enforced the value of running these sessions. We are now looking at extending our relationship with the Club into the 2020/21 season to allow us to deliver further workshops on a number of relevant topics and to build on the foundations now established.

WTF-created videos to support those in difficult times

WTF-created videos to support those in difficult times

WTF-created videos

Activity purpose: The WTF videos are created to provide those going through difficult times with a set of positive messages to help them and inspire them to address the challenges they are facing. These videos support our goals to be a visible, proactive and positive presence in our community and to improve access to information and resources that will engage, inform and encourage those who are looking for support.

Outcome: Three videos have been created are available on Facebook and/or Youtube. 

1. Random acts of kindness make a real difference 

2. Self care and your well being during difficult times 

3. Feeling anxious? Ideas to cope with anxiety 

1. Random acts of kindness make a real difference : this video provides a reminder to us all, that one simple way to make ourselves feel better, is by being kind.  It’s good for our own mental health as well as those who we’re kind to.

See our blog post here to watch the video.

2. Self care and your well being during difficult times : Looking after ourselves is often the last thing we do. We’re good at advising and supporting everyone else, but rubbish when it comes to us. So this little video is a reminder of some simple things you can do to look after your own well being and mental health.

 See our blog post here to watch the video. 

3. Feeling anxious? Ideas to cope with anxiety : For some people, anxiety is something they only experience before a game, or going back to school after the holidays, or before a job interview. For others, it is crippling and effects every part of their life. Whatever your relationship with anxiety, this video suggests a few things you can try to help respond to it more positively.

See our blog post here to watch the video.

First WTF Research report available

First WTF Research report available

WTF's first research report

Activity purpose: The aim of this research is to provide an understanding of the current climate relating to the mental health and wellbeing of young people, under the age of 25. This research provides insight for us to pursue all our goals.

Outcome: The 74 page document provides an executive summary and recommendations which will inform the decisions WTF makes in the future. The research identified three key areas WTF needs to explore:

  • improving mental health literacy for staff as well as students
  • ways to engage parents and families so they are better able to support young people
  • the development of mentorship programmes in University


Leo Gancalves is a Portuguese graduate of Psychology and Criminology from Nottingham Trent University who has a passion for research and mental health. She joined the WTF team in March as part of the Futures You programme.  Thankfully, much of the literature review and secondary research was carried out prior to the lockdown, and Leo was able to complete her research from home.

The parameters of the research were limited to three main areas that WTF had identified as key to developing the long term strategy for the projects we are planning to provide in the local area:

  • the barriers that prevent young people accessing support for mental health and wellbeing
  • factors impacting on the wellbeing of university students
  • the cultural context of mental health and suicide

Leo will be presenting her findings to the Trustees in June and we are looking forward to this. 

If you are interested to see the research please contact us.

Charlie Waller Memorial Trust (CWMT) training for WTF members

Charlie Waller Memorial Trust (CWMT) training for WTF members

Lisa our Charlie Waller Memorial Trust trainer

Activity purpose: The CWMT training is part of our goal for the WTF team to be equipped with the skills to be able to work with charities, local organisations, schools, youth groups and individuals to improve attitudes to mental health by implementing early intervention programmes.

Outcome: The Charlie Waller Memorial Trust is a charity set up, much like ours was, in the aftermath of the suicide of their son, Charlie, at the age of 28. Their aim, like ours is to “increase awareness of the signs and the dangers of depression amongst young people and to encourage those who may be depressed to seek help. It also encourages those that are well to pick up the symptoms in others and persuade them to get help”.

CWMT was the obvious place for us to go for information and a valuable session was provided by our trainer Lisa.

On Saturday 16th November 2019, the Charlie Waller Memorial Trust provided trustees and members of the WTF family with a morning of essential information in understanding mental health and well-being. Our trainer, Lisa, was sensitive to our needs, and provided the information in an engaging and accessible that made each participant feel valued.

We explored:

  • ways to recognise distress and to understand some of the warning signs that might indicate someone needs our help or intervention
  • ways we might be able to help before a person is in crisis
  • the impact on our own, and others’ lives, of struggling with mental ill health
  • what makes a good listener
  • how the brain works (very much a simplified way)
  • mental health as a continuum
  • the 5 Ways to Well Being

Each of us left the session feeling much more confident about our own understanding of mental health but we also felt more able to respond to the needs of others in our lives, though we are not Mental Health First Aiders.

We would highly recommend the Charlie Waller Memorial Trust: fantastic service and brilliant training. Thank you.

WTF Awareness sessions (networking)

WTF Awareness sessions (networking)

Activity purpose: These Awareness sessions have two aims – firstly to enable WTF to grow our network both locally and wider with similar organisations and also with other groups that can help and support us; and secondly, to increase the recognition of WTF and ‘why we are here’ by our community and other organisations and charities . This networking will then support us in pursuit of all our WTF goals .

Outcomes: We have had three sessions that have proven very valuable. We have extended our network, gained new contacts for support and guidance and raised awareness of the mental health issues that challenge us all.

The recent sessions were hosted by: 

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) in Derby (October 10th 2019)

The Institute of Mental Health in Nottingham (December 16th 2019)

Gym City Fest (January 29th 2020)

To mark World Mental Health Day on October 10th,  Derby CAMHS opened their doors to the public, and invited us to attend alongside many other charities and organisations aimed at preventing suicide and offering young people support and guidance.  

The event was officially opened by Derby County legends, Roy Macfarland and Roger Davies and raised a fantastic £255.75.

It was great to be there, and we met a whole range of organisations and charities all working towards the common goal of preventing suicide in young people, in particular. It’s a great encouragement to us to see so much support available for young people and we felt an even greater call to ensure young people know about them: our website will be an invaluable source of this kind of information so we can’t wait until that is ‘live’.

We met some young people too: we listened to their stories; we listened to what they think could be improved in mental health services for young people; and we listened to how they think schools might improve and be better equipped to support students.  

We’ve got a lot of work to do but feel ready to respond and to offer our services to help young people lead healthy lives.

Thanks for inviting us Leanne, it was a great event!

WTF has been nominated as one of the Institute of Mental Health’s nominated charities and we were invited to their Christmas Party alongside 200 other partners in the field of mental health and wellbeing.

It was a good opportunity to see what work is being done in, and around, Nottinghamshire and afforded many conversations with colleagues. 

Money raised from the event will be shared between WTF and Jonathon’s Voice (a charity set up after the death of another Forest supporter aimed at improving attitudes to mental health and wellbeing in the workplace).

Gym City Fest January 29th 2020

Gym City might have been made for WTF: green and white walls, green desks and white fittings. I felt at home immediately. What I had imagined might be an intimidating environment (I’m a bit of a stranger to the gym) was anything but. The welcome was warm: staff couldn’t do enough to help and they made a cracking cup of tea!  

Our prominent position at the heart of the thriving gym ensured that our message couldn’t really be missed and this stimulated many conversations, with all sorts of people. What was particularly pertinent was the number of people who knew someone who was struggling with anxiety and/or depression. The event aimed to raise awareness of men’s mental health and with membership of Gym City being 65% male, it was an ideal venue to do this. 

Events were timetabled to  showcase sports and activities available at the gym, including kick boxing, Zumba and Bhangra Flex, for men and women, to have a go at, and there were plenty of people to take up the challenge tonight, (I was nearly tempted to kick off my doc martins and join in. Almost. Maybe next time). The live DJ (not a usual feature of Gym City) helped get the party started, and the high octane vibe carried the exercise to another level. 

Thanks Gym City for a thrilling, and enjoyable evening that provided WTF with an opportunity to join others in raising awareness of the issues that affect so many of us, and in creating talking communities.

Mental Health First Aider training

Mental Health First Aider training

Activity purpose: Training as a Mental Health First Aider is part of one of our goals for all our team to eventually undertake. These skills will be invaluable in their own right as well as enabling us to achieve our other charity goals.

Outcomes:  On November 9th 2023, WTF volunteers completed their Mental Health First Aid Training.

This two day course qualifies you as a Mental Health First Aider, and provides you with:

  • An in-depth understanding of mental health and the factors that can affect wellbeing

  • Practical skills to spot the triggers and signs of mental health issues

  • Confidence to step in, reassure and support a person in distress

  • Enhanced interpersonal skills such as non-judgemental listening

  • Knowledge to help someone recover their health by guiding them to further support – whether that’s self-help resources, through their employer, the NHS, or a mix.

It was delivered by Julia from Mental Health for England and explored topics ranging from depression and self harm to psychosis and suicide. The two day course was delivered sensitively and thoughtfully and Julia was mindful of our loss of Will, as well as the lived experience of some of our volunteers. It was hard going at times but really was worthwhile and helps us to understand the risk factors for mental health conditions that may affect young people and also helps us identify the protective factors that can help prevent mental ill health and challenges to emotional wellbeing.


WTF now has 10 Mental Health First Aiders. We hope to deliver this training again in 2024 so that as many of our volunteers are trained as possible.

For more information about the course contents, format, structure and takeaways see here.

Donations to Charities

Donations to Charities

Before we formally set up our charity we were raising funds and passing those funds on to other charities that had programmes and initiatives that we wanted to support. We wanted to support them because we know their activities are inline with our own purpose and the outcome we seek.

Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) was a priority for us to support. 

CALM are leading a movement against suicide and we felt it as crucial that we support them, in the immediate aftermath of Will’s death. If more people know about CALM, more people can be saved.

CALM run a free, confidential and anonymous ‘helpline’ (as well as a webchat service), offering help, advice and information to anyone who is struggling or in crisis. They run fundraising events across the country, raising the profile of mental health and supporting young men in particular.

The video is the kind message we received back from CALM for our donation of over £20,000 to support their ‘helpline’.

PAPYRUS is the national charity dedicated to the prevention of young suicide.

We also chose to support Papyrus in the first year or so after Will’s death because we learned they specifically support young people and offer practical training to help prevent suicide. We still feel it is important that we make as many young people as possible aware that Papyrus exist, if not for themselves, but also for their friends; they literally can save young lives. 

The card below is the kind message we received back from  PAPYRUS for our donation of over £1,493 to support their work in saving young lives.

Press the ‘ Hide page ‘ button to go quickly to ‘google.co.uk‘.


For great advice (from Childline) on covering

your tracks, click  ‘ Cover tracks ‘ button


Volunteer Corner






Important information

Just need to let you know that all materials referenced below are to help you to help someone and that Will Garvey Trust Foundation cannot be responsible for their content or use. Here we provide links (signposts) for you, for example to other websites, videos and podcasts provided by other organisations and groups. Please use the information and resources responsibly and review any policies or disclaimers applicable at the referenced sites.