Emma Picton Jones from Pembrokeshire is to receive a Special Recognition award for her work in mental health at the Pride of Britain awards 2018.
After being left widowed in 2016 when her husband Dan took his own life after suffering depression and anxiety for years, Emma realised there was a gap in support for those with mental health problems in rural communities.
Driven by her husband’s suicide note ‘you couldn’t help me but you could help someone else’ and with agricultural occupations carrying one of the highest suicide rates with one farmer a week committing suicide, Emma started asking for donations at her husband’s funeral and set up the DPJ Foundation to support and help people in rural communities to open up about their mental health.
Since Dan’s passing she has raised more than £75,000 for the foundation and in January the foundation launched ‘Share the Load’, a 24-our text and phone service run by Samaritans-trained volunteers, helping to link people with much needed counselling and support.
More than 100 stars will come together this evening to celebrate the nation’s unsung heroes at the prestigious Daily Mirror Pride of Britain Awards, in partnership with TSB.
It is the biggest national awards event of its kind, with millions of viewers on ITV tuning in to recognise the amazing achievements of people up and down the country.
Pride of Britain is a very important part of my life. I’m thrilled that it’s become a staple part of British culture. I never fail to be humbled by those who have often turned a tragedy into something pretty magnificent.
Hosted by Carol Vorderman, celebrities and public figures including Prince Charles, David Beckham, Simon Cowell, Ellie Goulding, Michael Sheen, Amanda Holden, the cast of Strictly Come Dancing, and members of the England football team will be honouring this year’s winners.
There will be an Outstanding Bravery award for the British divers who risked their lives to rescue a group of Thai boys trapped deep underground in flooded caves, in a lifesaving mission that held the world spellbound.
And a Child of Courage award for an eleven year old who despite spending most of her young life in hospital remains positive, courageous and determined to do something to thank the doctors and nurses who have looked after her.
Other winners include a courageous teenager who saved his father’s life out at sea, a widow driven to help tackle mental health after her husband’s suicide, a 10 year old heart transplant patient instrumental in changing the law on organ donation, and an inspirational pensioner who has dedicated much of her life to helping others.
The Daily Mirror Pride of Britain Awards, in partnership with TSB, will be broadcast on ITV on 6th November at 8pm.