Matthew Lewis Walks to Raise Funds and Awareness for Men’s Mental Health

If there’s one thing we know about Harry Potter alumni, it’s that they give back. From Bonnie Wright (Ginny Weasley) using her wedding to speak about sustainability to David Bradley (Argus Filch) donating his art skills to raise funds for Epilepsy Action time and again, the former cast members always seem to be using their platforms to change the world for the better. This past month, Matthew Lewis (Neville Longbottom) donned his most comfortable shoes to do the same.



The star and his brother, Anthony Lewis, took to the streets with over 100 others in a 92-mile charity walk to raise money and awareness for Andy’s Man Club, a men’s suicide prevention charity. The organization, which was established in 2016, offers free peer-to-peer support groups in the UK and online with the goal of providing men a safe place to discuss their experiences and end the stigma surrounding men’s mental health. Lewis opened up to BBC Breakfast to share his thoughts on the subject.

I think one of the really important things that we’ve talked about a lot in the last couple of days is that everyone’s going through something. […] And I think the more that men share those experiences and the things that they’re dealing with, the more everyone realizes they’re not alone. It’s not just them. But until we share, it can feel very, very lonely; you can feel very isolated. But what people have to realize is that you’re not alone and that there’s people out there.

This particular charity walk is in memory of Gary Speed, a much-loved professional footballer who took his own life in 2011. Speed had an exceptional career, playing midfielder for Leeds United, Everton, Newcastle United, and Bolton Wanderers. He later played for the Wales National Team and was manager for the last year of his life. The charity walk traces some of Speed’s most significant moments, starting at Goodison Park, where he played for Everton as a youth, and ending at Elland Road, where he played as a midfielder for Leeds United.



The cause is particularly personal for Matthew Lewis, who grew up as a Leeds United fan and was deeply affected by Speed’s death. He noted that it was his hope that participating in the walk would spread awareness about the enduring high levels of male suicide in the UK. He expressed pride at being invited to walk for such a worthy cause.

Sometimes – not always – it is as a simple as just talking and sharing, and if we could walk the 92 miles and spread awareness for that and hopefully help some people, then all the better.