LPFF CEO Alex Welsh and Project Coordinator Sonia Smith met The Duke of Cambridge and shared their experience of how the power of football can be channelled to improve the lives of those experiencing mental health problems. The Duke was particularly interested in how Coping Through Football creates an environment where service users feel comfortable talking about mental health and supporting each other.
Alex said: “We are delighted to support the Heads Up campaign as football has much to contribute to increasing understanding of mental health issues. Coping Through Football has taught us that football can be a magic pill that transforms and saves lives. Being and feeling part of a team does so much to reduce isolation and boost self-esteem and confidence, so football is the perfect vehicle. Having the Duke of Cambridge championing this campaign will be transformational in deepening people’s understanding of mental health. It was inspirational to meet someone who not only loves the game but also completely gets its wider benefits.”
The campaign which will use football to “generate the biggest ever conversation around mental health” was launched by the Football Association in partnership with mental health charity Heads Together. Heads Together is an initiative spearheaded by The Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and The Duke and Duchess of Sussex to tackle stigma and change the conversation on mental health. ‘Heads Up’ will “harness the influence and popularity of football” to “show the world that mental fitness is just as important as physical fitness”.
Alex Welsh also appeared in the campaign film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKeHpj6aUpc