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Boulder Kids Mental Health Climbing Initiative

by Climbing out of Depression in East Grinstead, West Sussex, United Kingdom

We did it
On 7th December 2021 we successfully raised £5,895 ( + est. £1048.75 Gift Aid ) with 127 supporters in 42 days

We'll support children who are struggling with their mental health by providing free nurturing & inclusive climbing sessions in a safe space

by Climbing out of Depression in East Grinstead, West Sussex, United Kingdom

New stretch target

Support many more children and set up regular social gatherings and events with additional activities such as outdoor rock climbing, yoga, mindfulness and mentoring. 

In 2018 following the loss of friend and fellow climber Katie Kemp, Be Fuller founded Climbing Out of Depression -- a charity that provides free, fun, nurturing and inclusive climbing sessions for those that are struggling with their mental health -- as a positive action to help others like Katie, to find some relief from their symptoms within the wonderful community of climbing. 

1633700335_1633700327064.pngBackground and research:

There have been numerous studies into the transformative effects that physical activity can have on those suffering from a wide range of mental health conditions. However, climbing and bouldering provide something a little more special than the natural endorphin rush that we get from jogging or cycling. 

To climb, a person needs to focus and stay present - which hold to grab next? where to put my left foot? what's the best route to the top? Problem solving whilst engaged in a physical activity results in a deeply mindful experience - without the need to sit still with your eyes closed, or be guided through a meditation. 

This unique combination of physical exercise and mindfulness practice makes climbing one of the best activities to provide therapeutic support to someone suffering with anxiety, depression, intrusive thoughts and much more.


The other fantastic benefit is that climbing is for anyone! As soon as we can stand humans begin to climb - think toddlers climbing out of their cots and onto sofas, into cupboards and up the stairs. 

1633700377_1633700369093.pngClimbing as a form of exercise is deeply intuitive and is accessible to anyone - the GB Paraclimbing Team is testament to this. 

You don't need to prepare or train to have a go. You just need to turn up and for someone to literally show you the ropes!

The UK is a little further behind our European and American peers when it comes to research and development into climbing as a therapeutic sport, but we know from personal experience and stories recorded by others, that climbing can radically change your perspective and support you to overcome a huge range of mental health issues. 

Our solution

Climbing Out of Depression is a simple solution to lifting any perceived barriers to climbing for therapeutic purposes, by providing free, safe and encouraging sessions to those that could benefit. We work with NHS services and through promoting our work at walls, through social media and word of mouth to get the word out and from there people can just sign up and come along.


Now that we have a tried and tested model for adults, we want to develop our offer to serve children who are struggling. The last 18 months and the impact of Covid-19 has meant that children are reporting an increase in mental health challenges from 10.8% in 2016 to 16% in 2020 ( British Medical journal statistics). Following almost two years of disruption to school, social isolation, loss of stability, illness and loss at home, children are facing some of the biggest challenges for several generations. 

At Climbing Out of Depression we want to do what we know best, give youngsters the opportunity to experience the uplifting effects that climbing can provide.  By bringing this new initiative, Boulder Kids will provide at least 50 children with the opportunity to improve their mental state, join a caring and inclusive community, and find their happy place!  We hope to further this initiative by offering social sessions to children who have taken part in the training to encourage them to continue to climb and make friends and connections in the wider climbing community.


This project offers rewards in return for your donation

£500 or more

0 of 2 claimed

GB Climbing Coaching Experience

You will be rewarded with 1 hour of bespoke climbing instruction with Belinda Fuller. Belinda has coached the GB paraclimbing team to multiple World Championship medals and has over 15 years of experience teaching climbing to all ages and ability levels. Belinda is also the Founder of Climbing Out of Depression and has a passionate connection to helping those struggling with their poor mental health.

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