MP takes up the Lamp5k challenge for mental health campaign

Lamp aims to recruit 8,000 people.

John Ashworth MP (far right) with runners for Lamp5k

Leicester South MP and Shadow Secretary of State for Health, Jon Ashworth has pledged his support for mental health in Leicester by supporting the Lamp5k challenge.


Local mental health charity, Lamp (Leicestershire Action for Mental Health Project) is co-ordinating the Lamp5k campaign throughout Mental Health Awareness Week (10-16 May 2021) to promote the positive effects of physical exercise on mental health.


Jon Ashworth joined Lamp ambassador, Greg Hollingsworth, friends and colleagues to run 5km around Leicester’s Victoria Park and pledged his support for the campaign.


The charity aims to recruit 8,000 people across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland to run, walk, ride or roll 5km during Mental Health Awareness Week and hopes to raise funds in the process to support its services.


Jon Ashworth MP said: “It is a pleasure to join Greg to highlight the importance of exercise to people’s mental health. In Leicester we have been subject to restrictions more than any other city over the last year or so, and we all need to look after our own and other’s mental health.


“I hope many people take part in the Lamp5K campaign. If you are unable to do the full 5k, anything you do will benefit your mental health. You never know, you may enjoy it and take up running longer distances as I did.”


The Lamp5k is a fun challenge with a serious message behind it. Lamp, which helps people access mental health services, has reported an upsurge in demand for its helpline, advocacy services and online resources during the Covid-19 pandemic.


The average number of calls per month had doubled by October 2020 and the annual target for advocacy support, April 2020-March 2021, was reached last year, months ahead of schedule.


Lamp ambassador Greg Hollingsworth added: “Lamp is based in Leicester city centre and to have the support of our local MP is amazing. We’re so pleased that Jon was able to join us and actually participate in the event.


“The Lamp5k campaign has seen people from across the city, county and all around the world pledge to complete their own 5k runs, walks, swims and bike rides.


"We hope that this magnificent support will help to promote the positive impacts that physical exercise can have on people’s mental health and raise some valuable funds for the charity.”


Local businesses are also throwing their weight behind the campaign including lead sponsor Hinckley and Rugby Building Society.