Pushing up for mental health in June

May 23, 2022 BY

Fit for a cause: Lifeline CVM executive officer Lisa Renato is once again encouraging people to partake in the Push-Up Challenge, which helps raise funds for crisis support. Photo: FILE

LIFELINE Central Victoria and Mallee is once again joining forces with the Push-Up Challenge to raise money for their crisis support service and wider awareness of mental health.

Executive officer at Lifeline CMV, Lisa Renato, said last year about 250 people got involved, helping raise $12,500.

“It was a fabulous event, it was the first time we’d done the Push-Up Challenge at Lifeline Central Vic and Mallee,” she said. “That kind of money allows us to recruit more volunteers and train them.

“Our volunteers go through about 12 months of training before they’re accredited as crisis supporters. The more volunteers we can recruit and train means the more calls we can answer and the more lives we can save.

“The Push-Up Challenge absolutely means whether we’re able to take on an additional cohort for the second half of the year or not.”

The challenge involves doing 3139 push-ups throughout June, representing the number of deaths by suicide in Australia in 2020.

Ms Renato said while data provided to Lifeline shows a reduction in deaths by suicide in the last year, the number is still shocking.

“Any life lost to suicide is a shock and has a massive impact on the people around them,” she said.

She said a physical initiative also can improve people’s understanding of mental health, especially those less likely to reach out for help.

“It gets the conversation going and it can lead to people seeking the help they didn’t realise they needed, or helping a friend get help,” she said.

To join in the challenge, register at thepushupchallenge.com.au. You can select Lifeline Central Victoria and Mallee as a beneficiary, with all money raised going directly to the Bendigo centre.