Each week 5asideCHESS introduces you to a likeminded project. Starting with a Valentine Treat! Connection is everything to us, and bringing a group of Game Changing projects together is one of our big goals for 2019. If you know of someone doing something great let us know at Hello@5asidechess.com
Behind_a_Smile explores the concerns of mental health and the people who are affected by it. You can see some of their brilliant gear on their Instagram, where the Wigan-based enterprise also raise awareness of the need to stay connected with people, even if they appear fine.
‘Check on ya Mate,’ if you will.
We met Matt and his dad at Wigan Warriors last year. Actually, Ryan has known Matt since they worked together at a magazine a few years back.
The premise of Matt’s brand is a simple but extremely powerful one. So powerful, in fact, that a number of people have committed their permanent support. As well as arms, chests and legs, Behind_a_Smile also collaborates with various charities.
There are a few messages on our Battling Suicide Bus written by people that said “We had no idea, they were so outgoing and happy go lucky.” The story of Mr T in Sheffield was a classic example.
Mr T was a barber. A strong and caring guy who, in the words of the many friends we met at the Folk Forest Fest last year, always listened to other people’s problems.
RIP MR T is one of the most striking and unique images on the Battling Suicide Bus. The story, though, is one we hear time and time again. That’s why we think the work Matt does is so important. You can support the cause and get a very decent T-shirt if you click on this link.
“I often think to myself about why I started Behind a Smile and if anyone really enjoys it, or if they just kinda feel sorry for me (laugh) … I wanted to try and start my own brand, as I think I’m creative in my own little way, so I just thought, ‘I’m not getting any younger or healthier, so just do it’ ” – Matt