Jonny Benjamin #FindMike
Jonny Benjamin is an award-winning mental health campaigner, film producer, public speaker, writer and vlogger from London.
|At the age of 20 he was diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder, a combination of schizophrenia and bipolar, and later began making films on YouTube about the condition that have been watched by hundreds of thousands of people. Jonny now speaks publicly about living with mental illness and has written articles and given various interviews on TV, Radio and in print around the world to help educate and break stigma.
He was awarded the first Janey Antoniou award from Rethink Mental Illness to recognize the achievements of his work and was subsequently made an ambassador for the charity. Jonny has also been awarded the prestigious Making A Difference award from the charity Mind.
In 2013 he presented a BBC Three documentary for their mental health season, It’s A Mad World, and authored a piece about male suicide for BBC Radio Four’s World At One. More recently Jonny became a producer at film production company Postcard Productions and helped to make the Channel 4 documentary, The Stranger On The Bridge, which received widespread acclaim and has since been nominated for a number of awards.
The Stranger On The Bridge tells the story of Jonny’s search to find the man who stopped him from jumping off a bridge in 2008 when Jonny was really unwell. The #findMike campaign was launched in January 2014 to help raise awareness of suicide and quickly went viral, with over 300 million people seeing and sharing the social media campaign globally. Within just two weeks, Jonny found the man he had been looking for. The Stranger On The Bridge is available to watch online on the Channel 4 website.
Currently, Jonny works with various organisations and charities to change the way mental health and suicide are viewed and treated. He is also a public speaker and regularly gives talks to increase awareness and understanding.
Together with Postcard Productions and Pixel Learning Jonny has just launched ThinkWell, a mental health workshop which is being taken into schools across the country to empower pupils to talk about their wellbeing and seek support should they need it. He is also helping to develop a play about suicide which was recently awarded funding by the Arts Council.
In 2012 a book of Jonny’s poetry was published entitled Pill After Pill: Poems From A Schizophrenic Mind.
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