North East football coaches, committee members and club leaders have the chance to improve their understanding of mental health through a series of workshops.
Tackle Your Feelings is a training initiative designed for community Aussie Rules football clubs to help foster an environment where athletes are supported to effectively manage their emotions.
Available to clubs in Wangaratta, Wodonga, Alpine, Towong and Indigo council areas, the project involves a mental health training session delivered by local psychologists and further online learning.
It offers free access to simplified training and tools inspired by those used by AFL clubs and players.
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Sport North East program leader Tim Oliver said during last year's COVID-19 restrictions, the nine regional sports assemblies consulted with clubs across regional VIctoria.
"With more than 500 conversations recorded, we found that the number one concern for community sporting clubs was the mental wellbeing of their members and communities," he said.
Mr Oliver looked forward to rolling out Tackle Your Feelings in this region.
"This connects clubs with mental health professionals and demystifies the process of seeking support when clubs identify any players or members needing mental health support," he said.
AFL North East Border's Zac Hedin said football and netball clubs lay at the heart of many communities.
"Making sure those clubs and their people are supported and provided with the skills in dealing with and identifying mental health issues is critical, now more than ever," he said.
For more information or to get involved with the Tackle Your Feelings program, contact Tim Oliver by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 0429 857 692.