Rugby league and NHS come together

Rugby League and the NHS are coming together for Super League Round 27 to talk about the importance of good mental health and wellbeing.

The Rugby Football League and its charitable arm Rugby League Cares has created a programme with funding from Sport Relief, which aims to improve mental wellbeing in Rugby League Communities through the work of Super League Clubs’ own charitable Foundations.

As part of this programme, Rugby League is working with the NHS to use Round 27 to promote the steps everyone can take to look after their mental wellbeing and encouraging them to log on to a web page specially created by NHS Choices.

One of the charitable foundations involved is St Helens‘ Community Development Foundation, and manager Gordon Pennington said: “Many people don’t realise just how common mental health issues are or what you can do about them. Some think it is a sign of weakness and are ashamed to talk about their concerns. As a result, they are cutting themselves off from friends and family who can help them, and they are not getting hold of information or support that could make them feel a whole lot better. 

“Rugby League is coming together for Round 27 to get across the message that you can do a lot to look after your mental wellbeing, and that if you are worried about yourself, a friend or family member – or just want reassurance – you can get high quality, confidential information and help.

“Saints has a proud tradition of supporting its fans and local communities. Our campaign is part of a much wider programme of action to promote better mental health and wellbeing, and we are very grateful to Sport Relief for providing funding so that we can make this happen.”

Sport Relief has given Rugby League Cares a grant of £350k over two years to work with local communities to promote better mental health and wellbeing. 

More than 1 in 4 people will experience some kind of mental health problem in the course of a year, and around 4,400 people kill themselves in England each year.

Fans can logon to www.nhs.uk/rugbyleaguecares to find out more.

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