1. When was the Mark McQueen Foundation started?
The foundation was founded in July 2008 and launched in December 2008
2. Why was the foundation started?
The Mark McQueen Foundation has been set up by the McQueen family from Merseyside in loving memory of their son Mark, who tragically took his own life in June 2007. The Foundation supports young men struggling with emotional and mental health issues via community projects and specialist charities. The Foundation’s ultimately wishes to help young men find their place in the world.
3. What are the foundations objectives?
Via charities and community projects that help to improve young men’s mental health the Foundation supports essential and innovative activities that work to reduce suicide levels and tackle the root causes of poor mental health.
The Foundation will support sustainable not-for-profit projects in Merseyside and other areas around the theme of young men’s mental health as well as projects undertaking strategic research into suicide.
The Foundation’s overall aim is to contribute towards reducing the rate of male suicide in the area and to support young musicians and musical activities that engage with young men to reflect Mark’s passion for music.
4. Who manages the foundation?
The Foundation is administered by the Community Foundation for Merseyside. The family appointed the Community Foundation for Merseyside as their Foundation’s administrators and managers in 2008 to especially provide due diligence, monitoring and reporting on the achievements of the grants made as well as provide advice in the sensitive area they wished to work in.
5. Who works for/within the foundation?
All the staff team at the Community Foundation are involved with the Mark McQueen Foundation at various stages and at differing levels. The Mark McQueen Foundation is overseen by the Community Foundation’s Chief Executive is Cathy Elliott, Chief Executive and the grant-making is managed by John Ford, Philanthropy Services Manager.
6 .Where is the foundation based?
The Mark McQueen Foundation operates from the Community Foundation for Merseyside’s offices on Hanover Street in Liverpool City Centre.
7. What are the main funding objectives of the foundation?
The Mark McQueen Foundation will support Merseyside based projects which meet one or more of the following priorities;
- Support groups and help-line/counselling services for young men, children, or young people with mental health issues
- Support for family and friends who have lost someone to suicide
- Campaigns for a positive mind-set change around mental health and suicide issues
- Research and information gathering projects and collaborations to support the improvement of mental health practice and prevention of suicide
- National or regional charities working in a local Merseyside setting on mental health and young men’s issues
- Extra curricular student activities to support students, especially those with mental health issues
- Projects and charities using the theme of music to work with young men or local musicians
- Projects tackling the issue of bullying with young people
- Local projects supporting unemployed young men into training and employment
NB: In exceptional cases, projects benefitting areas other than those in Merseyside will also be considered.
8. What is the foundations greatest success?
The Foundation has always taken an entrepreneurial approach to supporting community projects and charities in order to tackle the issues of men’s mental health. Our greatest achievements to date have included building the long-term capacity of CALM and supporting their ground-breaking research into how suicides are dealt with in the UK from the perspective of families and friends. Also included is the reduction in waiting times for counselling at Compass’ Liverpool service as suicides were taking place whilst people were on the waiting list. There are also many small achievements in every amount of support given by the Foundation that transform lives for the better.
9. How does the foundation plan to grow?
The Foundation grows from strength to strength each year, taking calculated risks, challenging practice and providing vital support for innovation and what continues to work for young men. The Foundation holds an endowment of £100,000s which grows financially year on year in order to provide a yield to be spent on grant-making annually; this is how the Foundation will remain for the long-term.
10. Who are the foundation major partners?
The Foundation enjoys working with many varied partners, community groups and charities each year. There are some partners that the Foundation would not be without though due to their vital work which includes CALM and SOBS as well as the Community Foundation for Merseyside as its charitable administrators and advisors.
11. Are there any partnership / sponsorship opportunities?
There are partnership opportunities with the Foundation, especially sharing best practice in the delivery of men’s mental health services, funding of activities along this theme alongside other Foundations and grassroots activities. If you wish to be a partner with the Foundation, please contact us.
12. How autonomous is the Foundation?
The Mark McQueen Foundation is an independent Foundation under the umbrella of the Community Foundation for Merseyside, registered charity number 1068887. Decisions on funding awards are made by the McQueen family independently and facilitated by the Community Foundation. All funding decisions, activities and plans for the Mark McQueen Foundation take into full account public benefit and charitable aims under charity law.
Mark Joseph McQueen
Mark Joseph McQueen (1980 – 2007)
Mark was an easy going, often shy, yet infectiously humorous and, above all, talented young man. The youngest son in a loving and caring family living in south Liverpool. Throughout his youth and into early adulthood Mark pursued his passion for music becoming an exceptional guitarist and insightful songwriter.
Sadly Mark was forever plagued by mental illness which gave him bouts of difficult depression throughout his youth. As Mark passed into adulthood the stresses and pressures of modern life and his ever present condition became too much and on 30th June 2007, at just 27 years of age, he took his life.
The Foundation which bears his name was created by his loving family to embody the spirit and passion that was so present in Mark’s character. Its aim is to assist doctors, nurses, therapists, scientists, friends, family and the rest of society in focussing greater attention on mental health issues in our young population.
An Interview with Mark’s father Doug McQueen
To learn more about Mark and the lives of the people he touched click to visit his Memorial Website.