Kilmarnock striker Kris Boyd hopes to honour the memory of his late brother Scott by encouraging more people to open up about their mental health issues.
The former Scotland international and his family were struck by tragedy in September 2016 when his younger sibling took his own life at the age of 27.
But Boyd has now decided to set up his own charity in the hope he can help others suffering with mental health problems.
The 34-year-old has teamed up with life coach Donald MacNaughton to form The Kris Boyd Charity, which will offer a range of services to help tackle the problem.
The subject is close to his heart but Boyd believes more people will be able to deal with their issues if they feel able to talk about them.
“In the world of football you always see it,” said the ex-Rangers striker. “There’s a lot of kids out there whose dream doesn’t really work out and you can see them struggling once they leave football. But this is a big problem everywhere – not just in football.
“So it’s always been something that has been in the back of my mind.
“Then when what happened with my little brother – which was obviously a big shock and is still raw – it made me decide to try to raise awareness about this issue and make people understand themselves basically.
“The stigma is there in every day life. It can be a male thing in Scotland to act the tough man and just get on as if nothing has happened. But the reality is if people open up and speak it can help everyone.
“I started talking to Donald and realised there was an opportunity for me to go and tackle something that inside football I felt was a big problem.
“After what happened with Scott and even just being a father and a husband, I realised that life isn’t plain sailing. There are ups and downs.
“Social media can play a part. When you look online everyone else’s life looks rosy. You have people posting pictures of themselves out for a steak dinner or having lobster. But what they don’t post is the toast and beans they had the night before. But if you’re looking at everyone having a great time, it’s easy to ask, “Why aren’t I?”.
“So being able to understand that is the big thing. Being able to understand you’ll have good days and bad but that you can also come out the other side of it. And really understanding yourself gives you the best chance to do that.
“We still don’t know why my brother did what he did but if we can help others to understand themselves, hopefully they won’t get to that stage. If we’re able to help one person then it’ll be a success.”
:: The inaugural Kris Boyd Charity event is a Valentine’s Ball at Ayr Racecourse on February 17. For more details go to http://www.thekrisboydcharity.co.uk