WNL Well-Being Programme in full flow
The Football Association of Ireland has teamed up with the HSE National Office for Suicide Prevention (NOSP) to provide a Programme for WNL players that promotes mental health and well-being, a first of its kind initiative for the SSE Airtricity Women's National League, using the promotional slogan of #FlagYourFeelings
In March, following an initial consultation period with WNL personnel, the HSE NOSP made ‘Start’ (Suicide Prevention Skills Online) available to all WNL Clubs. It is a free 90-minute online session that prepares participants to identify people who are at risk of suicide, confidently ask them about the topic and connect them with resources that can help them stay safe.
Already, a combination of players, coaches and club officials have signed up to complete the training. HSE Resource Officers for Suicide Prevention are also available to each club to offer wider support and continue helping players with well-being awareness.
League of Ireland Director Mark Scanlon praised the Programme by saying: “It is fantastic to work with the HSE in creating a Well-Being Programme for all Women’s National League players. The Mental Health and Well-Being of the players is very important to us and we are lucky to have the expertise of the HSE NOSP available to us as we roll out this programme. The response from the clubs is hugely encouraging as it helps to foster the goodwill that exists within the League.
“A huge amount of credit should go to the Well-Being Working Group who turned an idea into something real that will have a positive impact on a lot of people connected to the League. Now that it has been rolled out, we hope that each of the 10 clubs and its players fully engage with the HSE NOSP to make the most of the Programme.”
The FAI will continue to work closely with the HSE NOSP to provide more support to WNL players & coaches over the course of the season. This initiative supports work underway as part of Connecting for Life, Ireland’s National Strategy to Reduce Suicide.
For more information on suicide prevention training available from the HSE, visit – https://www.hse.ie/eng/services/list/4/mental-health-services/connecting-for-life/training/
Well-Being Working Group
WNL Committee Representatives: Niamh O’Mahony, John Flood
Player Representatives: Avril Brierley, Eleanor Ryan-Doyle
Coach Representative: John Sullivan
Club Representative: Erika Ní Thuama
HSE Representative: Martin Ryan