July 29, 2016

Lifeline lays down ‘22 Push Ups Challenge’
Lifeline Aotearoa is calling in Kiwis to take on the ‘22 Push Ups Challenge’ to raise awareness of suicide in New Zealand.

The 22 Push Up Challenge originally began in the United States as a way to raise awareness of the 22 veterans who complete suicide every day. 

Lifeline CEO Jo Denvir says in New Zealand 22 ordinary Kiwis commit suicide every two weeks. 

“Sadly, last year 564 Kiwis died by suicide, the highest number on record and nearly double the annual road toll, which stood at 321. For young New Zealanders, particularly Maori, suicide is the leading cause of death.

“The ‘22 Push Ups Challenge’ is our way of helping to raise awareness of suicide in New Zealand and to ensure people suffering from suicidal thoughts know they can get specialized help from Lifeline’s Suicide Crisis Helpline (0508 Tautoko) 24 hours a day, seven days a week,” says Ms Denvir. 

The video of Lifeline’s highly trained volunteers taking on the “22 Push Ups Challenge” can be found at Lifeline Aotearoa’s Facebook page.

“I encourage everyone to watch our amazing volunteers taking on the Challenge, post their own, make a donation to Lifeline and then challenge their friends to do the same. The more people we have participating, the more we can do collectively to highlight and de-stigmatize this serious issue,” says Ms Denvir. 

Ms Denvir also says, following last month’s announcement that Lifeline only has enough funds to operate its free 24/7 helplines for another year, the 22 Push Ups Challenge is another way the organization is seeking to raise required funds to continue it’s suicide prevention work. 

Donations can be made at lifeline.org.nz or by texting ‘LIFE’ to 3181 to donate $3.