UQ professor pedals for purpose

15 Apr 2024
Professor Sagadevan Mundree (L) is on his bike for mental health

In a bid to bolster mental health support programs for regional Queenslanders, The University of Queensland’s Professor Sagadevan Mundree is gearing up for an extraordinary journey.

Between April 19-26, he will embark on a 1,311km cycling odyssey from Brisbane to Longreach as part of RideWest, a charity initiative aimed at vital mental health services, particularly for rural and regional communities, through the Royal Flying Doctors Service.

Professor Mundree’s inspiration to join the charity ride stems from a lifelong commitment to mental health advocacy.

“I have been a strong advocate for mental health and wellness since I was a teenager,” Professor Mundree said.

“I have been in the agricultural sector all my life and when I read about RideWest, it resonated with my values and the impact it can have on our regional communities.

"I am inspired by RideWest’s mission to make a difference to mental health for regional Queenslanders, who feed our nation.

“They’ve provided a platform for me to raise awareness of the need for more mental health support programs for those living in regional areas, while doing something I love.”

But Professor Mundree was not always a cycling enthusiast, with his journey into the sport beginning 17 years ago when he and his family moved to Australia from South Africa.

Cycling“My team in South Africa gave me a road bike as a gift when I left, but I’d never considered it as a sport,” he said.  

“I made a commitment to learn to ride the bike and send proof of that and, in doing so, I got hooked to cycling.”

Preparing for this gruelling adventure has required meticulous training and guidance for Professor Mundree.

"RideWest has a captain and four deputy captains who have been instrumental in putting a training program in place that we have been following for the past four months,” he said.

“They have provided amazing mentorship, and the training rides with the group has been phenomenal”.

“I can’t wait to get on the road and ride for something I’m so passionate about.”

As Professor Mundree gears up for this challenge, he’s asking those who can to support RideWest by visiting his online support page.