Point Cook firefighter Karthick Thanigaimani is encouraging others to speak up about mental health as he participates in the Firefighter Stair Climb Challenge this month.
The virtual event kicked off on 10 September and will run through to World Mental Health Day on 10 October.
The Stair Climb raises funds for Post-Traumatic Stress Injury (PTSI), depression and suicide and this year has an overall fundraising goal of $500,000 to donate to Lifeline, Fortem Australia and 000 Foundation.
In his first Stair Climb Challenge, Karthick has set himself a goal of taking more than 5000 steps on his step ladder every day of the month and hopes to raise more than $1000.
He said he was motivated to raise awareness and funds for mental health through his work as a CFA volunteer.
“First responders are involved in a lot of challenging – and sometimes traumatic – incidents,” he said.
“Everyone at our brigade understands the importance of mental health and we do everything we can to debrief after certain incidents and be open with each other.
“It’s important we continually generate broad awareness about all mental health issues across our emergency services and the community.”
Karthick said during COVID times, it’s been increasingly important for people to speak up and connect with their family, friends and colleagues they trust.
“The pressures and challenges associated with the restrictions across Victoria has made it hard for people, but we must focus on what makes us happy and reach out to those we trust,” he said.
Those who wish to support Karthick in raising funds for PTSI, depression and suicide can donate at www.firefighterclimb.org.au/climber/karthickthanigaimani.
||CFA News & Media