Mackay mental health event takes on special new meaning
ORGANISERS of a Mackay charity run supporting mental health hope the annual event will take on a special new meaning this year.
The coronavirus pandemic has brought mental health issues and awareness to the fore.
In Victoria, there has been a 19 per cent increase in presentations for urgent and emergency mental health services over the past six weeks.
Other areas across Australia are also reporting increased rates of anxiety and depression.
LRC Running Club organiser Dawn Mansfield said the impact of COVID-19 on Mackay and the rest of the world highlighted the importance of next month’s charity run.
The club’s annual Run 2 Glow 5km run or walk will raise much-needed funds for Mackay Hospital and Health Service’s mental health unit.
“We have been holding this event now for the past six or seven years,” Ms Mansfield said.
“It’s just a way of getting everybody together to get their glow sticks on, run out in the dark and have a happy time.
“While we are having lots of fun, we are also raising money for the mental health unit.”
Since its inception, money collected from Run 2 Glow has gone towards the unit and has helped pay for new initiatives and any extra items needed, such as lounge chairs for visitors.
Ms Mansfield said the charity run also supported mental health by encouraging attendees to be active, engage with others and brighten up the night with glow-in-the-dark fashion.
“A lot of people coming on the run, you don’t know what issues they are going through,” she said.
“I hope the run has more of a special meaning this year and I hope it brings out a lot more people that may be having mental health issues, or they may know someone else having issues.
“If this is one way to get people out and about, then it will be well worth it.”
Run 2 Glow is a COVID-19 safe event and will be held on Friday September 11 at 6pm.
Participants will meet at Blue Water Quay, River Street to register before the run.
Registration costs $10 per adult or $5 for children aged six to 12.
Participants will need to provide their name, address and phone number for contact tracing purposes.
If you or anyone you know needs help, phone Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636.