Wests employees step up to support men's mental health

Deputy chair Paul Lake, Campbelltown MP Greg Warren, Wests interim chief executive Daniel Grady, Mentoring Mens Ken Barnard accompanied by Wests staff who will take part in the challenge. Picture: Supplied

Deputy chair Paul Lake, Campbelltown MP Greg Warren, Wests interim chief executive Daniel Grady, Mentoring Mens Ken Barnard accompanied by Wests staff who will take part in the challenge. Picture: Supplied

Wests Group Macarthur staff will challenge each other to reach a combined one million steps today in support of men's mental health.

The group has partnered with the local Mentoring Men charity and the 25twoZERO Movement to raise funds which will help to deliver services to prevent and reduce male suicide in south west Sydney.

Staff across all Wests venues including Wests League Club, Country Club Gledswood Hills, Lakeside Golf Club Camden and Wests Tennis Club will go head-to-head with a venue step goal of 250,000 each, or one million steps across the group.

Wests Group Macarthur will donate $5000 to Mentoring Men for the provision of free life mentoring services for men in the community when staff reach their goal.

Wests interim chief executive Daniel Grady said mental health was a key focus of the group's community engagement activities.

"Our staff are actively engaged in our community activities and highly competitive," he said.

"It brings me great pleasure to not only set but to join the Wests 25twozero steps challenge with a collective goal and am confident we will be able to deliver $5000 towards Mentoring Men's efforts in the region."

The 25twoZERO initiative was established by Shay Hare, a mentor with Mentoring Men who was moved to take action after the suicide of his colleague.

He said he started the movement in honour of the 2502 men lost to suicide each year.

"The 25twoZERO movement offers opportunities for everyone to participate by selecting an exercise with a target variation around the number 2520 and raise funds from their friends and relatives to help make a difference in reducing male suicide," Mr Hare said.

Campbelltown MP Greg Warren said he was supportive of the Wests initiative.

"Mental health is a serious issue impacting many members of our community," he said.

"Anything that raises awareness and reduces the stigma surrounding mental health, is a positive step and a worthwhile cause."

Mentoring Men chief executive Ian Westmoreland said the 25twoZERO movement would strengthen Mentoring Men's ability to address mental health.

"The monies raised will help us to train more mentors in the South Western Sydney area which sadly has one of the highest suicide rates in NSW," he said.

All rostered staff across Wests Group Macarthur venues on Thursday, February 25 will be tracked using smart watches and Wests pedometers which will be pooled cumulatively to establish if the goal has been achieved.

Details: www.25twozero.org.au or westslc.com.au/community.

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