Staff from Envirolab Services and MPL Laboratories will push-up into the second consecutive year of supporting headspace, National Youth Mental Health Organisation’s Push-Up Challenge, a not-for-profit event that aims to raise awareness of mental health in Australia.
The initiative will take place May 11 – 31 May 2020 and highlight the devastating number of Australian lives lost to suicide in 2018 – the completion of 3,046 push-ups over three weeks represents 3046 lives lost.
Since first participating in 2019, we have again registered as a team for the collection of much needed funds. With some participating team members working from home (#WFH) due to the social distancing practices now in place, we will aim to send updates of their progress as we continue to all stay connected and positive together.
Donations can also be directly made to headspace National or a headspace Centre.
DONATE NOW to support the 2020 Push-up Challenge
Recognising the importance of mental health and wellbeing
Mental illnesses are extremely common in the Australian population. The Department of Health reports that one in five Australians suffers from a mental illness in a year, and almost half the population has suffered a mental disorder at some time in their life. The most common mental disorders are depression, anxiety and substance use disorders.
Although mental illness is treatable, about two thirds of people with mental illnesses do not seek any treatment. Regardless of the reason, the longer someone goes without treatment, the more distress they will experience, and therefore, the harder it makes it for them to recover. The situation is also deeply concerning and worrying for family and friends. Organisations including Beyond Blue, Institute, Lifeline, Sane Australia provide support for those experiencing a personal crisis with access to online, phone and face-to-face crisis support and suicide prevention services.
Envirolab’s commitment to employee health, well-being and safety dates to the early days of the company. Staff are regularly provided with access to educational programs and other resources. These are aimed to raise our team members’ awareness and confidence in looking after their own mental wellbeing, how to recognise when a colleague, friend or family member may be struggling with mental health or at risk of suicide as well as where to seek help and how to provide appropriate support.
Supporting mental health and wellbeing during COVID-19
The outbreak of the pandemic, coronavirus (COVID-19) has impacted people at home and in workplaces. During these unprecedented times, people may be feeling afraid, worried, anxious and overwhelmed by the constantly changing alerts and media coverage regarding the spread of the virus. The World Health Organization (WHO) has claimed that self-isolation or social distancing practices, are affecting people’s usual activities, routines and livelihoods, which may result in increased levels of loneliness, depression, harmful alcohol and drug use, and self-harm or suicidal behaviour. Some studies have further outlined that recent job losses, reduced household incomes and uncertainty pertaining to prolonged unemployment, will affect mental health, and that unemployment could emerge as the major public health crisis from COVID-19. The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) reported unemployment rose to 5.2 per cent in March 2020 and underemployment to 8.8 per cent. This week job advertisements in Australia fell 53.1 per cent month-over-month to 68,806 in April, after a marginally 10 per cent fall in March. Against this backdrop, the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) forecasted that unemployment may continue to rise to 10% by June. The continued impact and long-term mental health effects from the pandemic experience cannot be underestimated.
It's important to remember that you don’t have to go through this tough period alone because we're all in this together as we work to stop the spread of COVID-19. That's why it’s important that we stay emotionally and socially connected with friends and family at this time to reduce feelings of loneliness and isolation. For some, now might be the time to embrace technology or reaching out for support from friends or family to help get you set up and guide you through the process - give it a go! There are also people and services locally and nationally who can help us cope with what is happening, and to offer support to those around us.
If you or someone you know are struggling with their mental health, please seek assistance.
About the Push-Up Challenge and raising funds for headspace, National Youth Mental Health Organisation
The Push-up challenge is an annual initiative that was first created in 2018 to promote awareness about suicide in Australia and encourage positive mental health through physical activity. The 3,046 push-ups to complete represents the number of Australians who died by suicide in 2018.
The Push Up Challenge runs over three weeks, this year from May 11th – 31st with participants completing 3,046 push-ups over this time.
All funds raised during the challenge will go to headspace – Australia’s National Youth Mental Health Foundation. Headspace does great work in supporting, educating and helping the community around mental health issues.
According to headspace, more than 75% of mental health issues develop before a person turns 25, which is why the organisation plays a crucial role in trying to address the needs of young people and how they can access mental health support all over Australia. Headspace operates more than 100+ national centres, as well as online services and clinical programs all over Australia.
Learn more, sign yourself or a team up for the challenge here.
Additional Resources and Further Information
The Australian Government and health authorities including the Department of Health and government owned, not-for-profit organisations, including Health Direct Australia. Information also available of government sites for states and territories, for example Victorian Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS).
Australian Government Study in Australia provides international students with the latest essential health, visa, education and living support information as well as mental wellbeing support lines.
SBS has Coronavirus health and mental health information for those that speak a language other than English.
People with Disability Australia has information about the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and coronavirus.
World Health Organization (WHO) provides international updates, advice and resources.