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Northcote Leader Brief: YMCA_VIC

Page 1 of 1
Wednesday 21/4/2010
Page: 11
Section: General News
Region: Melbourne Circulation: 24,189
Type: News Item
Size: 235.84 sq.cms.
Published: --W----

Pair on a health trip

cyclists' bid to
save camps
for mentally ill
Charity I Suzanne Robson
A PRESTON cyclist is pushing her
body to the limit to save a camping
program for people with mental ill-
Liz Leorke and her partner
Cameron Stewart will cycle
1450km around Victoria in a Camp
'n' Cycle campaign to raise funds
for YMCA Victoria's outdoor ad-
venture camps helping people with
mental illness.
Ms Leorke, a YMCA project direc-
tor, said the future of the program
for people with a range of illnesses
including schizophrenia, de-
pression, anxiety and eating dis-
orders was uncertain after June
when State Government funding
"I really feel passionate about the
connections that can occur in a Liz Leorke (right) and her partner Cameron Stewart Picture: ADAM ELWOOD N43PT502
camp environment and for individ-
uals to experience life outside of The avid cyclist said physical ac- Queenscliff, Yea, Falls Creek, Phil-
mental health systems and ser- tivity was crucial for people with lip Island and Mt Eliza.
vices," she said. mental illness because it released "It is a way the community can
Having battled depression and endorphins, aiding stress release show the main funding and govern-
eating disorders, anorexia and bu- and also the ability to cope. ment providers that this is really
limia, Ms Leorke said she could "Having seen what camp can do important and this needs support,"
understand the great leaps partici- for participants, I'll ride every kilo- she said.
pants had made at the camps and metre with that as my motivation,"
the improvements in their physi- Ms Leorke said. To make a donation to the Camp
cal quality of life. The couple's three-week journey, 'n' Cycle for Mental Health
"It is very much an which started in Fairfield on April campaign visit
empowerment process," she said. 17, will take them through

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