So, what are you looking for?



60, Mayfield Nurseries

Kevin poses in a green house

Kevin spent more than 13 years in the Army and still has intense flashbacks. The experiences Kevin had while serving his country have had a lasting impact on the rest of his life.

“I was in the Army 13 years, 131 days. Some was good, but a lot was torture. I was in Ireland when I was only 17 and one of my friends had half his head blown off. I caught him as he fell. It broke my heart. I lost another friend who shot himself in the neck by mistake two weeks later. I also went to the Chinese border and saw women mutilated.


It just all built up really and I ended up reliving four instances from my past over and over again. I get panic attacks and flashbacks. When I have a flashback I’m not here, I’m in the place of my flashback.”

It wasn’t until Kevin was 50 years old that he was diagnosed with Chronic PTSD, a complex form of posttraumatic stress disorder. It was a huge relief to finally understand why he was tormented by headaches, flashbacks and the need to self-harm. His illness causes his memory to blank some things out and whilst he can remember terrible events from decades ago, he often struggles to recall details of his children growing up.

“I was diagnosed in 2008. I broke down when I was diagnosed because I just hadn’t known what my illness was. I can remember forty years ago but I can’t remember my children growing up, I can’t remember so many things that have happened in their lives.”

Kevin’s caseworker from hospital put him in touch with Mayfield Nurseries, a social enterprise that receives money raised through Sport Relief to support people with mental health issues or dementia. The nurseries use gardening tasks as a method to calm the mind, increase resilience and build skills.

“When I first came here (Mayfield Nurseries) I was scared. I had no confidence because I was attacked a couple of times as well which put me back. I’ve been coming about a year. It gives me something to look forward to every week. I can trust people here. People here are so relaxed and friendly we are all treated the same. It’s non-judgmental which is so important to me.


If it wasn’t for this place I would be dead. Being here has given me life and something I haven’t had before. This place gives me something to live for (as well as my family). It is building my confidence back up.”

Based in Southampton, Mayfield Nurseries provides support for people suffering from a wide variety of mental health problems. Your Sport Relief cash goes towards funding vital projects like Mayfield Nurseries, alongside thousands of other organisations in the UK and around the world.