New scheme to encourage positive mental health culture in sports launched in Barnsley

  •  Stuart Rogers from Barnsley Council, who is leading on the Moving Mental Health Forward scheme

A new scheme to encourage more open conversations about mental health and provide support to those who need it has been launched in Barnsley.

The Moving Mental Health forward initiative aims to create a positive mental health culture within local organisations, groups and clubs involved in sport and physical activity.

With around 57% of Barnsley's population considered active, many people are involved in or around these settings, whether as volunteers, participants, players, friends or parents. 

The scheme has been launched by Barnsley council in partnership with Creative Minds,  a charity hosted by South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.

To become part of the Moving Mental Health Forward network, organisations, clubs and groups have to complete a form stating what work they are doing at the moment and identify any support required.

If successful, they will become recognised as providing a positive mental health culture in their setting. Those organisations, clubs and groups that are going above and beyond will achieve special gold recognition. 

 Councillor Jim Andrews, Cabinet Spokesperson for Public Health, said: "It's important that we talk about our mental health and that we're not afraid of sharing how we feel.

He added:"Hopefully, Moving Mental Health Forward scheme will start these conversations and will pave a foundation for future work that will be possible when working together."

 Organisations, groups and clubs will be able to access training, support events, messaging support, connection to mental health services and also be able to access an activation grant fund of up to £1,000 to support their efforts. 

Carol Harris, Director of Operations at South West Yorkshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and Director Lead for Creative Minds, said: “Many people take part in physical activities and groups within their communities to help improve their mental health and wellbeing.