Pushing-up for a good cause

Member News image Diamond Creek 2nd Lieutenant Fiona Macken is taking part in the 2022 Push-Up Challenge


CFA members will be taking on mental health hands-down, taking part in the 2022 Push-Up Challenge.


The Push-Up Challenge requires participants to complete 3,139 push-ups over the course of three weeks, an average of around 149 per day. This number reflects the lives lost to suicide in Australia in 2020 (the latest data available). Participants can choose to complete 100%, 50% or 25% of the total number of push-ups.

The Challenge started in 2018, with the aim of raising awareness of mental health in Australia. Participants can choose to fundraise, with money raised going toward a number of Australian mental health organisations, including Movember and Lifeline.

Diamond Creek Firefighter and 2nd Lieutenant Fiona Macken is taking part in the challenge this year for the second time.

“I’m mainly doing the challenge to raise awareness. Particularly in the emergency services sector, anything that raises the profile of mental health and wellbeing is a good thing. On top of that, I love a good physical challenge too.”

Fiona said that discussion around mental health is vital.

“I think we’ve come a long way in terms of talking about mental health and the issues that this sector faces, but I think we’ve probably got some way to go yet. Obviously with the traumatic events we witness and the vicarious trauma we’re exposed to, we deal with a lot.

“I think that anything that normalises discussing mental health issues will be a really healthy influence on the sector more broadly.”

Fiona said she thinks more CFA members should get involved.

“I would definitely encourage others to take part since the challenge raises awareness within our sector. Obviously firefighting can be quite a physical task too, so the fitness benefits are a bonus. The challenge also helps to highlight the well-known link between physical activity and improvements in mental health.”

“You can do it in a team too, so why not develop some camaraderie with your brigade or work colleagues along the way?”

You can find out more about The Push-Up Challenge here.


Submitted by CFA News