Cheshire FA has joined forces with Kooth to help support the mental health and emotional wellbeing of young people aged 11- 26 involved in the football community.
Its Kooth.com (for 11 to 18 year olds) and Qwell.io (for 18 to 26 year olds) services will provide footballers, coaches and referees across the region with free, anonymous digital mental health support. The platform has services available 24/7 which will offer young people the ability to:
- Get expert advice - via a support library that is packed with tools for boosting mental wellbeing and coping with challenges.
- Talk to Kooth’s community - engaging supportive, welcoming forums that are a great place to connect with others who may feel the same way they do.
- Use self-help tools - to set goals, document their journey and practise mental fitness.
Running alongside is a team of friendly, expert Kooth practitioners who are here to give advice and talk young people through anything they are experiencing. One-to-one text based chat sessions are available from midday to 10pm on weekdays and from 6pm to 10pm on the weekend.
There are no waiting lists or thresholds to meet, and a referral from a medical professional is not required to access Kooth.com or Qwell.io. Once a young person is registered, the service is instantly available through any internet-connected device such as a smartphone, tablet or computer.
Greg McLean, Business Development Manager of Cheshire FA, explained: “As a County FA, providing mental and emotional wellbeing support to all our members and colleagues is vital. By teaming up with Kooth, we have been able to extend our offer of support tools for our grassroots community, ensuring that all our clubs, leagues and referees have appropriate resources available to signpost to support services when required. This is especially important to help our Welfare Officers when faced with concerns from young people within their clubs and leagues. This really is a positive step forward for mental health and wellbeing of youngsters across Cheshire.”
Layla Farahzady, Engagement Lead at Kooth, added: “Asking for help with mental health concerns is not always easy - especially when you are a young person. It’s essential that a safe space is provided where they feel that they have time to talk and will be listened to; having somewhere they can share their worries when feeling anxious, without judgement and fear of stigma can really help.
“Kooth combines best practice in digitally-enabled mental health with innovation in community partnerships. Our partnership with Cheshire FA is part of this ongoing strategy to reach people who might not otherwise know where to get help. By working with Cheshire FA and its team of Welfare Officers we can ensure young players involved in club and league football in the region feel supported and are able to access the help they need, when they need it - no matter the issue or situation, Kooth is here to help."
Kooth is accredited by the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP) and is the UK’s leading digital mental health platform.