Birmingham Newman University exceeds fundraising for BRIT Challenge to Support Mental Health and Wellbeing 

04/06/2024 by Newman Staff
BRIT Challenge at Birmingham Newman University

Over the past month, Birmingham Newman University Sports Centre has united staff, students, and community members from the gym of all abilities to take on the BRIT Challenge. The event was dedicated to promoting mental and physical well-being for all participants.  

Through a series of exercise-based activities, the Newman community have been rallying together to raise funds for MIND and the British Inspiration Trust (BRIT). Participants of the challenge aimed to collectively reach a distance of 2024 kilometres within one month, a goal that was exceeded by achieving an additional 180 kilometres. Attendees tracked their miles, contributing to this impressive accomplishment.  

Complementing the physical challenge, mindset sessions featuring music, mindful colouring, and free access to the table tennis court for students was also available.  

Molly Mooney from the Newman Sports Centre, who helped organise the event commented:

“We pride ourselves on fostering inclusivity, positivity, and a strong sense of community. Being part of such a rewarding and successful event was an honour. I extend my congratulations to my colleagues, whose efforts were instrumental in making the day a resounding success. To our students and community members, your support was invaluable in creating an enjoyable and memorable event.” 

Birmingham Newman University staff supporting each other
The support from the Newman community was strong.

The highlight of the month-long exercise initiative was a 24-hour cyclathon challenge held from midday on May 21st to midday on May 22nd, during which staff, students and members of the Newman community cycled and rowed non-stop.  

The campaign has raised £660, exceeding the original £300 fundraising goal. Speaking about the motivation behind this fundraising challenge, Newman Sports Facilities Duty Officer, James Westwood commented:  

“The decision to support MIND and BRIT was their focus on mental health, particularly BRIT’s work with young people. As awareness and conversations around mental health grow, it’s essential to provide support and encourage discussions about this crucial issue. 

Special thanks go to Lilly, Molly, and Dom for their assistance in organising and running the challenge, and to everyone who participated, donated, or helped publicise the event. The university looks forward to welcoming Phil Packer MBE, Founder and unpaid CEO of BRIT who plans to visit Newman to thank key contributors and deliver talks on mental health and wellbeing.”  

Phil Packer MBE expressed his enthusiasm for the initiative, stating: 

“I would be very happy to visit post-BRIT challenge and thank key staff and students who have helped to deliver the BRIT Challenge. I would be delighted to offer a few talks to staff on a training day and to students studying psychology, sport, nursing, counseling, health, and social care on topics such as disability, volunteering, wellbeing, mental health, and inclusivity.”