Match Retail is going to Make it Loud for Mental Health during the month of September by challenging each other to track their KMs while walking, biking, or running! Make it Loud is a passion project hosted by Delaney Brough, Account Manager at Public Label.
“I’m so thankful for my amazing team and their support and commitment for mental health awareness in the workplace.”
1 in 5 Canadians will experience mental illness during their lifetime. Their experience and pain will also impact their families, friends and colleagues. Mental health affects us all.
Worldwide, more than 70% of people with a mental illness do not seek help.
These are shocking statistics. And COVID has increased challenges for anxiety, depression, and isolation to even higher levels.
In March of 2018, I hosted a fundraiser event for CAMH (Centre for Addiction and Mental Health), to support awareness and access to mental health services in Canada. Through the month I asked people to share their stories on social media as we raised funds for the charity. I rented space at the Oakville Golf Club for a final evening event, and we had a great night with food, drinks, and raffles. noise was our team’s name for the event.
In just a few short weeks we raised over $5,000 and I developed a deeper appreciation for just how important awareness is. So many people are just not okay.
4 years have passed and we are still making noise, talking about mental health and self love. Through social media, events and participating in other local projects we are working together to build awareness to eliminate the stigma around mental illness.
Through our social medial channel, we have encouraged people to write about personal challenges faced and overcome and shared those blogs in the hope that even one reader may feel less alone.
I have been overwhelmed by the bravery of those willing to share their stories and open up their pain to build a path for someone else. Along this journey, I’ve learned that so many of us are impacted by a mental health challenge – either your own, a family member, or friend. By talking about this more openly, together we can end the stigma that prevents so many from seeking help, or acknowledging their struggles.
Our September “Make it Loud” Walk has become one of our main community events. September is also Suicide Prevention month.
In 2019, we held our first 5K walk – September 22nd in Milton, ON. Over 80 participants joined the 5K walk and we were so proud to see the excitement and enthusiasm from everyone who participated to make the day a success. Through fundraising efforts leading up to the big day, we collectively raised almost $4,000 for CMHA (Canadian Mental Health Association). Funds raised were used to support more than 100 hours of free counseling services.
In 2020, COVID restrictions challenged us to do something different. Instead of a single day event, we put together a self-directed fitness challenge for the month of September using the Nike Run Club App. Participants tracked their fitness progress under the group challenge of 300 KM for the month by walking, biking or running. Over 150 participants joined, and 3 participants even hit the intense goal for the month! Collectively we raised almost $9,500 for CMHA. Nearly double our goal!
This year, I’m hosting the month-long challenge & fundraiser again. My goal is to double our number of participants and to raise $10,000 for CMHA for counselling services.
With our current work from home culture, it is important for all of us to remember to take a break. Get outside. Exercise. Physical activity can have a profoundly positive impact on our mental state. Regular exercise relieves stress, improves memory, helps you sleep better and boosts your overall mood.
And the App allows you toss in some healthy competition as you try to stay ahead of others on the team. I was surprised by how much of a positive motivator this was for me last year!
Thank you to Match Retail for joining the challenge this year! I’m excited for some friendly competition amongst team members, and the opportunity to continue positive conversations about mental health in the workplace and show support for each other, and our communities.
Be well. Be kind. And have fun getting active along the way!
Delaney Brough, Account Manager at Public Label