City of Newcastle has marked World Mental Health Day by launching an eight-week campaign to encourage the community to improve their physical and mental health whilst earning discounts that can be redeemed at local businesses.
'Healthy Hearts & Minds' involves a series of active challenges, mindfulness programs and online workshops run through the Lean in Newy app which translates good deeds into credits and discounts to use at 130 local businesses.
Lord Mayor Nuatali Nelmes said the Healthy Hearts & Minds program was a fun and innovative way to improve community wellbeing while providing direct economic support for small businesses given the impacts of COVID-19.
“We understand that this is a challenging time with many in our community facing isolation, economic downturn and uncertainty which is affecting people's physical and mental health,” Cr Nelmes said.
"Healthy Hearts & Minds is run through the Lean in Newy app and features a range of challenges which can be done at home or require you to get out and use a range of facilities across the local government area like exercise equipment and walking trails.
“Challenges include swimming 500 metres at your local pool, running on Bathers Way, doing push ups at one of City of Newcastle’s outdoor fitness stations, and participating in a free online mental health workshop.
“As the weather warms up and we gradually emerge from lockdown, we hope the campaign will help people reset with their health, re-engage with their local environment and provide a timely boost for local businesses."
Headspace Newcastle’s Community Development Officer, Byron Williams said the Healthy Hearts and Minds campaign aligns with Headspace Newcastle’s theme this year of ‘small steps start big things’.
“This is a great initiative that will encourage our community to prioritise their physical and mental health, whilst knowing they are doing something good by supporting small local businesses,” Mr Williams said.
Small business owner, Grace McMahon of Gem Ceramics said she has experienced an increase in sales as a result of participating in Lean in Newy.
"With the support of Lean in Newy and its members, I have been able to grow my small ceramics business and even launch my website in the midst of lockdown by reaching more people," Ms McMahon said.
Lean in Newy is part of City of Newcastle’s COVID-19 Community Economic Resilience Package.
Download the Lean in Newy app free from the App Store.