A LOCAL woman has raised £5,666 for Wiltshire Mind in a charity event to raise awareness of male suicide.
Shaw resident, Melanie Steele, held a fundraising evening called Operation Gold Dust, after two male models she knew from doing charity and bridal catwalks, Jay (Jamie) Hall and Louis Aryton, died by suicide.
The event involved a catwalk, dinner, entertainment from a local band and a display of supercars. It was held at Five Zeros Supercars in Bradford-on-Avon on Saturday 28th October.
“I’ve wanted to do this for more than three years and Covid shut me down,” says Melanie. “We made it and we put on a damned good show. The feedback has been heartwarming and humbling. The weather was awful but it definitely didn’t dampen anyone’s spirits. The event had everything; canapés, welcome drinks, three-course dinner, catwalk, auction, huge raffle, live band, dancing and of course, supercars. We chose Wiltshire Mind because they are the local go to charity if you need help with your mental health.
“The event was in Jay and Louis’s honour. Their deaths saddened and inspired me to do this and I will continue to remember them in our events.”
Melanie says she plans to do more charity fundraisers and the next will be dedicated to Friends star and Hollywood actor, Matthew Perry who was found dead at his home last month.
“It was with great sadness that we woke on the Sunday morning to the news that Matthew Perry had been found dead at his home the night of our event,” she said. “It’s well documented that he has struggled with his own addictions and mental health and he made clear that he wants to be remembered for the good he did in helping others with the same issues that he had. Our next show will also have a nod to this wonderful man.”
Above: Melanie. left, at the event