Strong Minds Together goes from strength to strength
Leisure United’s Thorncliffe’s Strong Minds Together initiative is an outstanding example of football and friendship, supporting mental health.
Leisure United’s Thorncliffe’s Strong Minds Together initiative is an outstanding example of football and friendship, supporting mental health. Back in May 2019, following the tragic loss of a footballing friend, the group was set up to support men aged 18+ to share experiences, get help and support each other in a relaxed, confidential atmosphere. Knowing that men don’t feel comfortable seeking out official help, this is an informal, welcoming group for men to attend, without stigma. Initially around 4 people came along to the sessions held each Tuesday 7-9pm, where an hour of chat, boardgames, refreshments and togetherness supported by a trained councillor, was followed by an hour’s friendly kick about on the pitch. The success of the format saw participation in the group grow to about 15 each week, prior to the national lockdowns.
More than ever the group realised the importance of staying connected and took to Zoom during the restrictions and set up a WhatsApp group to keep in touch between sessions. Their Facebook pagehttps://www.facebook.com/strongmindstogether/ now has 2.7k followers, and a spin-off, female only adult group was formed online too.
The ladies’ group, for those aged 18+, will kick-off in person at Leisure United Thorncliffe, on Thursdays 7-8pm, when restrictions are lifted. Their Facebook page is there to engage with others confidentially, to share thoughts and advice https://www.facebook.com/groups/629022627794406/?ref=share
As our centres are well attended by young people, Strong Minds Together are now developing a group for 11-15-year-olds, who may be struggling with school, friendships or homelife. The youngsters’ sessions are planned for Thursdays 4-6pm, with the first hour being chat, chilling out and chances to express themselves, followed by an hour of fitness and football, provided by Sheffield United FC.
“We are incredibly proud of the people who come along to the sessions and those volunteers that have helped the initiative go from strength to strength.” Comments Dean Hogan Director of Operations at Leisure United. “We hope to introduce Strong Minds Together sessions at our other centres, starting at Sheffield Graves and Sheffield Westfield, initially.”
For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org in confidence, or direct message either of the Facebook pages.