Coinciding with the GWS Giants’ JLT Community Series match against Richmond and community camp in Wagga Wagga, the Tackle Your Feelings program visited four towns in Victoria’s north-east and New South Wales’ Riverina region to deliver the program to community football clubs.
Over the course of five days, the program visited Myrtleford, Jerilderie, Coleambally and Wagga Wagga delivering the program to more than 150 community coaches.
Myrtleford Football Club captain Jake Sharp said he was proud to bring the program to his club that’s been affected by the recent summer bushfires.
“Our club is a focal point (for the community) and a lot of people are touched by our club and connected by our club,” he said.
“We see mental health as a major issue… we wanted to start making sure that people are equipped with the right knowledge about mental health and reducing the stigma around it.”
Tackle Your Feelings program manager Nick Walsh said he was proud to bring the program to towns where football is the cornerstone of everything they do.
“For a town like Jerilderie with a population of approximately 800 people, it was great to see one-eighth of the population gather at the local football club and further their education around mental health and wellbeing,” he told tackleyourfeeling.org.au during the trip.
The five-day trip finished with a special session with TYF ambassador and GWS Giants coach Leon Cameron before his side took on the Tigers.
Cameron said he was passionate about being able to bring the program to areas where football is the lifeblood of the community.
“If we can create an awareness by rolling out this program in community AFL clubs, I just think it’s an outstanding program,” he said.