This week we are highlighting some of the programmes which can help members of the community to maintain or work towards more positive mental health.
The Pool Together project is a referral programme that supports local people with a range of needs linked to their mental health. Participants are supported through methods including;
- Online and face to face activities
- Welfare calls and visits
- Garden gate visits
- Social groups
Many of those involved with our Pool Together programme have become socially isolated due to things such as lockdowns or having no family. Our Community Navigation Team provide participants with access to enriching activities to build new friendships and enjoy a sense of belonging. Those who don’t feel ready to join our social groups are supported through the methods mentioned above to develop a relationship with a member of staff. This allows them to feel more comfortable and creates a familiar, friendly face to support them through their transition into society.
Rachel, Community Engagement Manager said
“I have really enjoyed working with partners in and around Blackpool and everyone has been very welcoming. There are an unbelievable amount of quality services designed to help people.. By far the most rewarding thing is to engage with someone over the phone and then to see them laughing with new friends in their first session. It is hard to let go sometimes but incredible when they don’t need my help anymore.”
High School Hubs
The High School Hubs programme is made up of three core programmes, placing High School Hub Mentors in all Blackpool high schools twice a week, to provide support to pupils from Year 7 to Year 11 alongside their academic pathways.
Blackpool FC Community Trust provide 1-1 mentoring to young people aged 11 to 16. The mentor covers stress and anxiety, behaviour, and attendance with many pupils from challenging environments or backgrounds. High School Hub mentors are based in schools permanently for two days per week, allowing pupils to drop in whenever they need some additional support.
Each week students work with their mentor to build their resilience, confidence and self-esteem. Mentors help pupils to cope with stress and implement strategies on how to overcome difficulties they may face in their lives. Mentors act as a facilitator within sessions, encouraging pupils to practise their talents and signposting them to develop their skills at provisions available in the community.
Alongside this, as part of High School Hubs, is Premier Leagues Inspires (PL Inspires), a 20-week, positive mental health and resilience programme. It is delivered once a week, to selected Year 9 pupils across each high school in Blackpool. The main focus of PL Inspires is to help young people reach their potential by ensuring they’re engaged, inspired, and develop the coping strategies to support them through the challenges of life.
Ashley Hackett, Chief Executive Officer of Blackpool FC Community Trust, said,
“This programme is another example of the quality of provision that the Trust are developing to support local people in the town. PL Inspires is a prime example of where we have worked with local and national partners to understand local people’s needs and found a way to help. We were identified as one of only 30 clubs in the country to be able to access Premier League funding for an Inspires topic and we have been very lucky to also receive support from our local public health team.”
Every Player Counts
Blackpool FC Community Trust deliver free football sessions every week at locations across Blackpool which uses football to support positive mental health and those living with a disability through physical activity and by creating stronger peer-support networks.
Every Player Counts uses exercise to overcome barriers for people, who may be suffering from mental health. It also provides one to one support teamwork exercises and finding the right physical activity for you.
Dave Maclean, Community Engagement Manager said,
“The programme aims to improve the lives of people with mental health problems by breaking down the barriers to sport and physical activity. Every Player Counts allows participants to enjoy sports in a friendly, supportive environment which caters for all levels of ability. Participants will benefit from improved mental and physical wellbeing.”
Our Unified Football (Positive Mental Health Sessions) takes place every Wednesday from 2 pm to 3 pm at Stanley Park and welcomes people aged 16+ struggling with their mental health.