Mates 4 MENtal Health was established in 2019 through Como Jannali Junior Rugby League Football Club.
The initiative, like most things of this nature, was off the back of a tragedy. Losing a long-time male club member to suicide. He was a father, a son, a brother, a cousin and a mate.
This rocked the family and the local community; it was then that two club members decided that something needed to be done at community level. An event was organised focusing on the blokes to raise awareness around mental health and the extreme suicide rates that our country has.
Working with Gotcha4Life, who have provided resources, including the great Gus Worland attending the event. We had such an amazing response to this event, we knew we had to keep this momentum going. Our aim is to be proactive, bring more awareness and most important of all – change to The Sutherland Shire.
We now have a beautiful relationship with Gotcha4Life, we have held workshops with Tomorrow Man and Tomorrow Woman. All of which have had great feedback. And we will continue to build community connections for this great initiative and cause.
We are very driven when it comes to mental fitness and looking out for each other. We’re dedicated to continuing to bring awareness within the club and our local community. Prevention is key and that starts with those conversations that we can sometimes find uncomfortable to have.
We are doing the Kokoda Trek in 2021 with two main aims. To take on a challenge that is not only about physical endurance but challenges us mentally too. When the Kokoda Trail is spoken about the physical aspect is often the focus, the mental fitness is just as important on this trek, just as it is in everyday life. And secondly to raise funds for Gotcha4Life so we can continue to introduce workshops into our local sporting clubs and high schools in The Sutherland Shire.
Como Jannali Junior Rugby Football Club's launch of Mates 4 Mental Health
A social event with a worthy cause to its name was a big success recently, to mark the launch of an initiative that encourages men to talk more to each other about some things that may be difficult to say.
Como Jannali Junior Rugby League Football Club recently started ‘Mates 4 MENtal Health’, a project kicked off by some of the clubs long-time members, who sadly lost some friends to suicide.
The aim is to raise greater awareness of mental health among men at a community level, and get the word out there that saying ‘I’m not OK’, is OK.