The singer, model and mental health advocate has recently run the London Marathon for Samaritans, having contacted the charity when he had suicidal thoughts
Ahead of Mental Health Awareness Week (15-21st May), Samaritans, the leading suicide prevention charity, has unveiled former X-Factor star and Union J singer Josh Cuthbert as its newest Ambassador.
Having personal experience of mental health challenges, including suicidal thoughts and anxiety – the theme for MHAW this year - Josh, 30, is a keen advocate of encouraging people to open up and seek help if they’re struggling.
Speaking candidly about his experiences, Josh said: “I’ve been through times when I didn’t want to be here anymore - it was a really difficult period. I would wake up every morning and think ‘I’d rather be asleep for ever – I just want to die, it would be so much easier’.
“A couple of years ago, it got really bad. I contacted Samaritans and I’m so glad I did – I honestly don’t know what might’ve happened if I hadn’t.
“From there, I got more help – my wife and family have been absolutely amazing. I still have good days and bad days, but thankfully I’m in a much better place now.”
With men making up three-quarters of people who die by suicide, Josh is determined to help break the stigma that prevents people from feeling able to reach out – ultimately helping to saves lives.
Josh continued: “Having lived with anxiety and depression for a long time, I desperately needed someone to listen to or lean on. To hear their story and realise I wasn’t alone, that I’m not the only man out there suffering would have been so helpful.
“I feel a responsibility to help people who are in that situation now. I know exactly what it feels like to be in that place of desperation and helplessness where you just can’t see any light at the end of the tunnel.
“It’s a massive honour to become an Ambassador for Samaritans – to become the person I needed at my darkest moments is huge, I’m over the moon.”
Samaritans CEO Julie Bentley said: “Josh’s passion for helping those who are struggling is remarkable. His bravery in talking so honestly and openly will have encouraged plenty of others to seek support, and I’m delighted that we’ll be working together to reach even more people.
“Having overcome his own incredibly difficult moments, Josh is the perfect inspiration that suicidal thoughts do pass, life can get better, and we can all experience and achieve more than we think is possible.”
Samaritans is also a charity close to Josh’s dad, Marcus, who is a listening volunteer, helping to provide emotional support to anyone currently struggling.
Both Josh and Marcus recently completed London Marathon 2023, with Josh raising more than £3,400 for Samaritans – the equivalent of funding almost 700 life changing calls.
Anyone can contact Samaritans, free, any time from any phone on 116 123 or you can visit www.samaritans.org
If you have any questions or would like to speak to Josh, please contact Max on [email protected]
- Anyone can contact Samaritans FREE any time from any phone on 116 123, even a mobile without credit. This number won’t show up on your phone bill. Or you can visit www.samaritans.org
- Every 10 seconds, Samaritans responds to a call for help.
- Samaritans is a charity and it’s the public’s kind donations and 23,000 volunteers that mean we are always there for anyone struggling to cope. Find out how you can support us or volunteer with us.
- You can follow Samaritans on social media on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.