The East Riding FA is joining a growing group of more than 1000 employers in England to sign the Time to Change employer pledge to tackle mental health stigma and discrimination. The first County Football Association to do so, East Riding FA is making a series of commitments which together aim to change the way we all think about and act on mental health in the workplace. Time to Change is a social movement led by charities Mind and Rethink Mental Health and funded by the Department of Health, Comic Relief and the Big Lottery Fund.
As part of its pledge to raise awareness about mental health, East Riding FA will encourage employees to talk about their experiences of mental health issues, provide more information and mental wellbeing and support services, and equip managers with skills to discuss mental health with their staff.
East Riding FA CEO Adam Lowthorpe will be the organisations Well being Champion and will guide colleagues to available resources, support and shape the wellbeing agenda for East Riding FA employees and play a key role in fostering a positive culture by embedding this role into their working day. During the coming year, training sessions for line managers will provide them with tools to discuss mental health and resilience with their staff with a campaign to promote a range of support services also being launched.
Adam Lowthorpe, East Riding FA Chief Executive Officer who signed the pledge on behalf of the East Riding FA said: “If the 20th century was the century that successfully tackled infectious disease, the 21st century will hopefully be known as the century that tackles chronic disease. And no chronic disease takes as big a toll on society as brain diseases and mental illness. I’m delighted that the East Riding FA has chosen to take this step and make a public commitment which recognises the importance of mental wellbeing and I hope that all our colleagues feel better able to talk about their own mental health and seek help if and when it is needed.”
Jo Loughran, Interim Director of Time to Change, said: “We know it can be hard to talk about mental health, which is why we’re supporting employers to open up; to talk and to listen. Too many people with mental health problems are made to feel isolated, ashamed and worthless, but with the right support, those of us with mental health problems can recover and have equal opportunities in all areas of life. Everyone’s attitude makes a difference and it’s fantastic to see organisations like the East Riding FA taking the lead.”