Saturday’s League One fixture against Accrington Stanley is Dale’s Mind matchday!
Rochdale Football Club and Rochdale AFC Community Trust are joining forces with the charity Mind to help raise awareness among fans about mental health and the support the charity provides.
The matchday is as part of Mind’s charity partnership with the EFL, which has seen the charity work with all 72 EFL clubs, including Rochdale AFC, to help bring a lasting legacy around mental health in football.
Players will wear Mind branded t-shirts during the warm-up, while we’ll be sharing key information across our social media channels in the run up to the fixture.
We’re also pleased to announce that Rochdale AFC Community Trust are launching ‘GOALS’, a new programme offering football for mental health sessions. The sessions are open to anyone who would like to benefit their mental wellbeing through socialising and engaging in physical activity. The sessions are free of charge and will take place on Tuesdays from 1.30pm–2.30pm on the Kick Pitch at the Crown Oil Arena, starting on Tuesday 20th April. If you’d like more information about this new session or would like to get involved, please contact Charlotte Griffiths, Dale’s Health and Inclusion Officer. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 01706 643 836.
Mind’s own research shows that over half of people (56 per cent) feel that football fans find it easier to show their emotions at football matches than at any other time. Despite this the charity also knows that many fans, particularly men, are struggling in silence for fear of opening up about their mental health. This is likely to have been made all the worse by the impact of the pandemic. Mind’s most recent research found that more than half of adults and two-thirds of young people saying their mental health got worse during the first lockdown.
The charity hopes mental health-themed matchdays like this will begin to open up the conversation among football fans about their mental health, as well as raising awareness about the support Mind offers at this difficult time.
Mind’s national charity partnership with the EFL launched at the start of the 2018/19 season and has since been extended to run until the end of the 2021/22 season. Working with all 72 EFL clubs across the country it aims to:
- Raise awareness about mental health with fans, clubs and staff
- Raise funds to deliver life-changing support
- Help improve the approach to mental health in football working with other partners in the game.
Paul Farmer, Chief Executive of Mind, said: “Every year, one in four of us will experience a mental health problem. That could be one person in every family, hundreds of football players and many thousands of football fans. We know that the pandemic has had a devastating impact on people’s mental health, not least fans, who have been missing the camaraderie and community spirit that comes with attending match days. That’s why it’s more important than ever that we remind fans of the support available to them on their doorstep and to let them know they don’t have to face mental health problems alone.
“We are proud to be working in partnership with all 72 clubs in the EFL, as part of our charity partnership with them, to be real game-changers in the way football tackles mental health. We hope that events like our matchday with Rochdale Football Club will reach out to fans and let them know that whoever you support, Mind supports you.”
For more information about Mind’s partnership with the EFL and wider work in football visit mind.org.uk/football.
Mind has a confidential information and support line, Mind Infoline, available on 0300 123 3393 (lines open 9am - 6pm, Monday – Friday).