Home Kent News Thousands raised for ‘very loving’ Tunbridge Wells student after tragic death

Thousands raised for ‘very loving’ Tunbridge Wells student after tragic death

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Original article from Kent Live

Community efforts have raised thousands of pounds for a Tunbridge Wells student who was found dead earlier this month.

The body of Olisa Odukwe, a former Bennett Memorial Diocesan School pupil, was recovered from Bristol harbour last week.

The 20-year-old had been attending the University of Bristol and had been missing for a number of days before the discovery of his body was made.

A GoFundMe page has now been set up by one of Olisa's close friends and raised more than £5,000 in a single day.

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The funds donated will go towards a memorial bench and tree to remember Olisa.

They will be installed in a place where the student "spent a lot of time with friends".

Any of the remaining money will be donated to mental health charity Mind UK.

Lucy Weatherly, who made the GoFundMe page, told BristolLive: “We wanted to get an inscribed bench and magnolia tree planted in the park where me and a lot of friends spent time with Olisa.

“We thought that if we made enough money for the memorial by fundraising there might be a couple of hundred pounds leftover that we could donate to a mental health charity.

“After the fundraiser had been up for a few hours, it seemed quite clear that a lot of people wanted to donate.

“We decided to raise the target so that we could donate more money to charity than we first anticipated.”

Olisa Odukwe played football for the University of Bristol team

Lucy describes Olisa as having been a “very loving” person who would be “proud” his memorial is going towards an important cause like mental health.

She said: “He was kind to absolutely every person he spoke to.

“He would be so proud that a memorial for him was leading to a vast amount of money that can be donated to important causes like mental health.

“The fact that Olisa's memorial can now signify the love and kindness of everyone who has donated as well as a reminder of a great and kind friend makes us so happy.”

You don't have to suffer in silence if you're struggling with your mental health. Here are some groups you can contact when you need help:

Samaritans: Phone 116 123, 24 hours a day, or email jo@samaritans.org, in confidence

Childline: Phone 0800 1111. Calls are free and won't show up on your bill

PAPYRUS: A voluntary organisation supporting suicidal teens and young adults. Phone 0800 068 4141

Depression Alliance: A charity for people with depression. No helpline but offers useful resources and links to other information on its website

Students Against Depression: A website for students who are depressed, have low mood, or are suicidal. Click here to visit

Bullying UK: A website for both children and adults affected by bullying. Click here

Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM): For young men who are feeling unhappy. Has a website here and a helpline: 0800 58 58 58

Speaking on the importance of discussing mental health, Lucy said: "Young men are resorting to ending their lives instead of feeling like their lives can be improved. This boils down to the fact that young men either think that they can't or shouldn't speak about their mental health, some thinking that they should not even be allowed to have poor mental health or that the help available is not for them.

"The NHS is under a huge strain and mental health is funded very poorly."

She says campaigning for better mental health services is "extremely important" and can "quite literally save lives."

"My friends and I would like to do as much as we can to change this however we can. Having a fundraiser in the name of Olisa is a start.

"Ideally this would be a yearly fundraiser that can hopefully raise a lot of money for charities such as CALM and Mind.

"Raising money for these charities is important since they provide help in the form of helplines and have accessible information on their websites. They also play a big part in campaigning for the government to increase funding for mental health services and education on mental health."

Press here to donate to find out more and donate to the fundraiser.

Original Article