A 170KM Journey from Pune to Mumbai for Mental Health Advocacy

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Pune, 6th February 2024: Mpower, the mental healthcare initiative backed by the Aditya Birla Education Trust, joyfully unveils the 5th installment of ‘Ride to Mpower.’ Scheduled for the 24th and 25th of February, this charitable cycling event will span 170 kilometers, traversing from Pune to Mumbai. Headed by Mrs. Neerja Birla, the Founder and Chairperson of Aditya Birla Education Trust, the cyclothon is poised to bring together over 200 professional cyclists and numerous fitness enthusiasts. Beyond the distance covered, the event symbolizes a collective effort to advocate for mental health awareness. ‘Ride to Mpower’ transcends mere cycling; it is a community-driven initiative sparking conversations about mental well-being.

Throughout its evolution, ‘Ride to Mpower’ has solidified its position as one of Mpower’s impactful endeavors, aiming to educate individuals on the pivotal connection between physical and mental health. This initiative is a potent force in the campaign to raise awareness about mental health, aspiring to #StampOutStigma and encourage open conversations about holistic well-being.

Recent assessments at the Mpower Center in Pune reveal that the city, known for its vibrant culture, faces a significant mental health challenge. Current data underscores the pressing need to address this issue, particularly among individuals aged 20 to 45, who predominantly seek mental health support. Commonly cited challenges include stress, anxiety, depression, and interpersonal issues. Pune’s distinctive cultural landscape, marked by intense work pressure, relational challenges, and demanding lifestyles, significantly contributes to mental health burnout. Given these findings, ‘Ride to Mpower’ assumes added significance as a pivotal initiative. It strives to raise awareness and promote understanding tailored to Pune’s diverse demographic. In response to identified mental health challenges, the campaign seeks to catalyze change, working towards reducing stigma and establishing a supportive community that effectively addresses the multifaceted mental health needs of Pune residents.

Speaking on the occasion, Ms. Parveen Shaikh, Vice President – Operations, Mpower, emphasized the ongoing mental health challenges faced by Indian society. She highlighted the collective responsibility each individual holds in alleviating these struggles. Ms. Shaikh underscored the significance of physical activities, such as cycling, as a means to address mental health concerns. Regarding ‘Ride to Mpower,’ she expressed hope that the event would serve as a poignant reminder, especially during the exam season – a period known for heightened stress among both students and parents. Ms. Shaikh emphasized the positive impact of exercise and physical activities in promoting the release of endorphins, natural mood enhancers crucial for coping with stress. Through ‘Ride to Mpower,’ Ms. Parveen Shaikh aims to drive awareness on mental health, emphasizing the potential role of physical activities in fostering mental well-being within the community.

Cyclists also shared their thoughts on the journey. Siddarth Bhamre, ProCyclist, said, “Being a part of ‘Ride to Mpower’ is more than a physical challenge; it’s a powerful statement. Every pedal stroke symbolizes my commitment to shatter the stigma surrounding mental health. As a cyclist, I am proud to be a part of this transformative journey, spreading awareness one revolution at a time.”

Purushrut Khillari, ProCyclist, stated, “Participating in ‘Ride to Mpower’ is not just about the miles we cover, but the conversations we spark. Each push of the pedal resonates with a shared dedication to stamp out the stigma attached to mental health. I, for one, am cycling for change, riding together toward a future where mental well-being is a priority for all.”

Tickets for the ‘Ride to Mpower’ event are now available on BookMyShow, the official ticketing partner.

In the pursuit of mental well-being, the first crucial step is acknowledging potential mental health challenges. The Mpower Pune Center, located at the Aditya Birla Memorial Hospital, stands as a beacon of support for all mental health concerns in Pune. Our expert team of psychologists and psychiatrists is dedicated to providing comprehensive assistance. Furthermore, our commitment extends beyond the physical confines of the center through the Mpower 24X7 toll-free mental health helpline at 1800 120 820050. With round-the-clock access to trained psychologists, it offers immediate support for anyone seeking help with their mental health concerns. Let us collectively strive to #StampOutStigma, fostering an environment where seeking help is not only acceptable but encouraged. Your mental well-being matters, and there is support available. Reach out, and let us embark on this journey towards mental health together.