A role for football in mental health: the Coping Through Football project

Oliver J. Mason, Rebecca Holt
2012 The Psychiatrist  
Aims and method Coping Through Football aims to improve well-being and reduce social isolation for younger people with severe mental illness in a deprived area of North East London. Interviews were conducted with 12 service users, 5 referrers and 2 coaches to obtain their views of the project's implications for health and well-being, quality of life and social/community relationships. A qualitative approach was used to derive themes from interview transcripts using some of the tools of grounded
more » ... theory. Results Themes included: identifying with past self; service with a difference: opening up the social world; safety; empowerment; and feeling good. Coping Through Football was seen by stakeholders as leading to increased well-being and social opportunities within a safe and understanding environment. Clinical implications For many service users the football project played a key role in their recovery of personal and social roles. Social and community-based mental health projects benefit greatly from active community collaboration, in this case a professional football club and several non-statutory sport/leisure bodies.
doi:10.1192/pb.bp.111.036269 fatcat:5thl4gpnkvfodl32gyxszdu6ey