Council colleague to participate in the Baton of Hope initiative

Jenni Swift and Evelyn

North Kesteven Council officer Jenni Swift is seeking to raise public awareness as she takes part in the Baton of Hope relay which aims to raise awareness and prevent suicide. 

#BatonofHopeUK is designed to be the biggest suicide awareness and prevention initiative the UK has ever seen, opening necessary conversations, and prompting appropriate actions. The specially designed baton will tour UK towns and cities for two weeks in Summer 2023, setting off towards the end of June, raising the profile of this issue like never before. Suicide is the biggest killer of men and women under 35 in the UK. The initiative brings people together to raise awareness, reduce the stigma, and get better at asking questions, listening, and directing people to the right help. 

Jenni, who works in Democratic Services, has been selected as a Baton holder for a London leg of the tour, which will take place on Thursday 6 July. Jenni and her family set up Evelyn’s Butterfly Effect after their daughter Evelyn Gibson lost her battle with mental illness on April 15, 2022. Evelyn’s Butterfly Effect lets Evelyn’s memory and kind legacy shine bright, through encouraging others to carry out random acts of kindness in her name. To learn more about Evelyn’s Butterfly Effect visit the Facebook page.

Evelyn’s Mum Jenni said, 

“I feel really honoured to have been selected as one of the Baton holders for the London leg of the tour. I will be carrying the Baton of Hope in Coal Drops Yard near Kings Cross and will pass a board promoting Random Acts of Kindness – how apt considering we set up Evelyn’s Butterfly Effect in her memory, to promote random acts of kindness.”

“Evelyn always wanted other people to see hope in the world. She didn’t want other people to go through what she went through and that is our driving force now. Let’s get the conversation going and raise awareness. Our young people deserve better. There is always hope.”

The specially designed Baton of Hope set off from Glasgow on Sunday 25 June and will now take a journey through towns and cities across the UK, reaching Downing Street on 6 July. Baton holders include celebrities such as Norman Cook (aka Fatboy Slim), Olympic cyclist Chris Boardman, Sheffield Wednesday midfielder Will Vaulks and mental health campaigner Dr Alex George. The Royal family is also expected to be represented on the tour. 

As part of the tour, there are also various online free and discounted mental health events and training for anyone to access.

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