Student Football Players

University Mental Health Day, Mental Health in Sport

HEH Mind collaborates with Hampshire FA and Solent University to promote conversations about mental health within sport

University Mental Health Day, Thursday 4th March 2021 is the national day for student mental health - a university wide priority for many UK Universities.

Students and staff across the UK to run events and campaign to promote awareness and support for students at universities to manage their wellbeing. The campaign aims to empower all members of the university community to be active in supporting student mental health.

This year mental health charity Havant and East Hants Mind (working right across Hampshire) is pleased to be teaming up students from Solent University’s BA (Hons) Football Studies course as part of HEH Mind’s partnership with Hampshire FA.

Mike Lock, Head of Community Engagement and Communications at HEH Mind explained; “Our discussion today is prompted by it being University Mental Health Day, and our desire to hear how students playing, working, volunteering and studying sport feel mental health can be supported in club and team settings.”

“The conversation which was video recorded will be made available online for more people to access, shares insights of participants at University. Their thoughts in how sports support wellbeing, what symptoms students and others have identified that players or supporters in their club might be noticed.”

Students strongly emphasised current and ex professional players talking about mental health helps to break down the stigma associated with mental health, while also identifying the importance of grassroots role models being needed to promote the real discussions at local club level.

Havant and East Hants Mind were able to describe how they are working with Hampshire FA to increase club and coach confidence, education regarding mental health and recovery services. Including the HEH Mind Ambassadors project (find more information by visiting Neil Cassar, Hampshire FA CEO added “By teaming up with Havant and East Hants Mind, we are aiming to reduce the stigma around mental health in our community. Having conversations, such as this one, are of huge importance in achieving this. Hampshire FA are looking forward to working with HEH Mind to explore and improve services available across grassroots football in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.”

Havant and East Hants Mind thanks everyone involved in this online recorded discussion (which can be viewed here): Emma Allen (Hampshire FA Marketing and PR Manager), Brandon Powell (Solent University Student), Imran Mpaata (Solent University Student), Zacki Doumou (Solent University Student) and Kim Wilcox (Solent University Lecturer).

Find out more information about University Mental Health Day

Find out more information about HEH Mind’s Ambassadors in sport project

Find out more about Hampshire FA and HEH Mind’s charity partnership