‘PTSD is a terrible condition’: Mother-of-three hosts charity ball for veterans in memory of her husband

A Billingham woman is raising money for a veterans mental health charity close to her heart.

Janet Atkin is hosting a Masquerade Charity Ball at the Jurys Inn, Middlesbrough on Saturday 26th November to raise money for Combat Stress, a veterans mental health charity which helps former servicemen and women with issues such as post-traumatic stress disorder and depression. .

62-year-old husband Shaun was a veteran but sadly passed away in November 2020. After his passing, Janet decided to dedicate her time to helping raise money for veterans’ mental health, and is even preparing to going to college to study psychology so she can help even more as a community volunteer for Combat Stress.

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She said: “Combat Stress is a small charity but they do amazing work and they need all the help they can get. It’s for soldiers with PTSD – they get help and support .”

Julie said she does “all sorts” to raise money for the charity: “I did car shoe sales, I do cake sales, I even got involved with local schools to see if I can sell cakes to kids. I have a fundraising day on June 4th with a barbecue and all, like a day of family fun. I also do raffles. You name it, I do it !”

She recently tried to publicize the prom so she could sell as many tickets as possible. She added: “The ballroom we have it in has 320 of them. It just gets the word out and hopefully gets people to come. I’ve been around the small businesses and they have been very helpful in giving out gift certificates and prizes for the raffle.

“There’s an awful lot going for it. Jurys Inn has been very good, giving me the room for free and the reception for free. Hope it’s going to be a good night. When they arrive they’ll get a drink reception, and then when they’re seated at the table, I have magicians coming in to do tricks! We have a meal and then we have a disco and an auction.

Janet said she decided to support the charity because her husband suffered from PTSD and she knew firsthand what it could do to ex-servicemen: “My husband passed away in November 2020 and he was in very severe pain. PTSD. It’s something that’s always been there – it’s a terrible condition. I thought, I’m on my own now, and I’m going to fundraise.

“I became a community volunteer to [Combat Stress]. I’m going to do a degree in psychology and counseling, so hopefully I can help a little more too. It’s a charity close to my heart.”

To purchase tickets for the event or for more information, visit Janet’s website.

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