Hollywood gossip guru Richard Reid has been crowned king of the African jungle after giving up the glitz and glamour of showbiz to breakdown the stigma of depression.
Reid took out season five of the Network Ten reality TV show, I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Her winning his chosen charity beyondblue $100,000 after spending time in the jungle alongside other celebrities.
“Even if you are not depressed or have anxiety, go to beyondblue. Just give them a look. It’ll change your life. The jungle will change your life, it’s changed mine,” he said, accepting the crown.
Reid beat reality TV star Yvie Jones and retired Hawthorn AFL star Shane Crawford.
After day two of being Mr Hollywood, Reid said he “let that go” and shone as himself.
“I have built a career on my happy persona. I am a happy guy but I have some dark, dark times – depression and a crazy anxiety and insecurity,” he said.
“Every day 200 people try to take their own lives in Australia and eight of them succeed, that’s one too many. If I can shine a light on that I will have helped just a little bit.”
It was his quick wit and banter which helped him and his peers survive the challenges of the jungle from snakes to creepy crawlies and eating plenty of rice and beans.
Reid even opened up on his battle with alcohol, his mother’s journey of bipolar, and overcame fears of confined spaces and snakes during his time in the jungle.
Beyondblue thanked Reid after the finale, tweeting: “Your time in the jungle has helped to break down stigma and show those of us living with mental health issues that we are not alone.”
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