O's scoop Community Project of the Year Award
If you would like more information on CTF, please contact Sonia Smith, Occupational Therapist, Waltham Forest Access & Assessment Team, Coping Through Football Project Co-ordinator, 26 Low Hall Lane, Walthamstow E17 8BE Tel: 0300 555 1242 ext 8471 or Howard Gould at the club on 0208 556 5973 and check out the website www.copingthroughfootball.org plus website stories on www.leytonorient.com
The award follows in the footsteps of the Silver Certificate received from UEFA last year in recognition of the projects unique approach and positive outcomes.
Chief Executive of London Playing Fields Foundation, Alex Welsh said: “We are delighted with this award which recognizes two things. Firstly, the role that community playing fields can play in transforming the lives of even the most disadvantaged of groups; and secondly, the importance of innovative partnership working in delivering sports projects that have huge additional health and social benefits."
The project has been extremely successful in helping players to turn their lives around and to live more independently. It has been recognised by the Department of Health as a model of best practice in the recovery of people with long term mental health problems and the goal is to increase the number of people who benefit.
Most of the players have experienced social exclusion, unemployment, poor physical and mental health and lack a social network or support and Coping Through Football sets out to address these issues.
The aim is to use the football experience to get fitter, increase levels of self-esteem and confidence, make new friends and ultimately to help people get their lives back on track. It is not so much a football project but more a social inclusion project that uses football as a tool to engage people who have experienced mental health problems.
• assist in the recovery of those with mental ill health
• be a tool for engagement with hard to reach groups
• can work together with the health sector on shared agendas to reduce inequalities
• help tackle stigma and discrimination
The project shows how sport can:
‘Coping Through Football’ is a transformational project that demonstrates how two sporting charities can work with the NHS to produce a sustainable recovery model approach to engage with and improve the wellbeing of adults and young people experiencing mental health issues.
Coping’s three project partners Alex Welsh (London Playing Fields Foundation), Barbara Armstrong (North East London Foundation Trust) and Howard Gould (Leyton Orient Trust) attended the occasion to receive the award from broadcaster Paul Hawksbee of talkSPORT.
The evening, compered by Soccer AM’s Max Rushden, included football celebrities such as Glenn Hoddle, Lee Dixon, Tony Cottee, Jimmy Greaves and England manager Roy Hodgson, to name but a few, and over £150,000 was raised for the Foundation at this inaugural event.
The Awards, hosted by the Willow Foundation, recognise and celebrate the very best of London football. The project was in good company as other recipients attending on the evening included Arsene Wenger who won the Outstanding Contribution to a London Club award and Harry Kane who won London Young Player of the Year award.
‘Coping Through Football’ emerged victorious when it won the London Community Project of the Year at the London Football Awards at Battersea Evolution.