Hope Network launches virtual 51K for Mental Health Awareness Month

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With May being Mental Health Awareness Month, Hope Network is inviting people to get moving with a free monthlong program to benefit mental health.

The Mental Health Awareness Month Virtual 51K Challenge begins Saturday and runs the entire month. Participants are invited to run or walk 51 kilometers (approximately 31 miles) throughout the month, honoring the 51.5 million people who live with a form of mental illness in the United States.

With May having 31 days, participants can break up the distance however they like and would need to average about 1 mile per day. There is no cost to participate, and those who take part are encouraged to invite friends and family to donate in support of their challenge.

The Virtual 51K Challenge is the first event in the 2021 One in Five Series. The One in Five Series is presented by Fox Motors and features four virtual or in-person events that invite people to join a global community in lacing up their shoes for mental health.

The proceeds from this year’s One in Five Series will help provide mental health support for groups who have been profoundly impacted by the pandemic, including health care, frontline and essential workers, as well as people in underserved communities.

“The pandemic has taken a toll on our physical and mental well-being,” said Dr. Kiran Taylor, chief medical officer, Hope Network. “The world will never be the same, and the emotional impact of this is limitless and touches all ages. With the One in Five Series, you are helping fund mental health support and treatment to those who need it the most, so we can all live the quality of life we hope for.”

The full schedule for the One in Five Series features both virtual and in-person events, and organizers will continue to monitor health guidelines throughout the year as they raise critical support for mental health while also ensuring the health and safety of everyone involved.

The full list of events includes:

  • Mental Health Awareness Month Virtual 51K Challenge – May
  • One in Five Marathon Relay – Aug. 27, Millennium Park, Grand Rapids
  • Suicide Prevention Day Virtual 5K – Sept. 10
  • World Mental Health Day Virtual 5K/10K – Oct. 10

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