Now in its 10th successful year, Coping Through Football (CTF) joined in the with the worldwide Mental Health Day celebrations by holding its annual tournament on the SCORE Centre’s 3G pitch recently. Hosted and facilitated by Leyton Orient Trust (LOT), the scheme is a highly successful transformational project that demonstrates how two sporting charities, London Playing Fields Foundation (LPFF) and LOT, can work with the NHS (in the shape of NELFT) to produce a sustainable recovery model approach to engage with and improve the wellbeing of adults and young people experiencing mental health issues.
Originally running just one session per week, the project now boasts four adult and two junior sessions across three venues in two boroughs!
The scheme has been well supported by the O’s players and management for many years with current midfielder Alex Lawless already having attended at SCORE to deliver a coaching session earlier this season. He returned to give further support and even helped to referee during the tournament alongside Director of Football Martin Ling who presented medals, for whom this was also his second visit of the year.
“It’s a project I sympathise with wholeheartedly,” stated Martin. “If I can inspire or help in any way I am more than pleased to come down and support.”
And Barbara Armstrong, from NELFT, said; “The Coping Through Football project is all about inclusion. It’s about creating an environment for all the participants where they feel equally valued. In recognising World Mental Health Day, we are promoting these values.
“WMHD continues to remind us of the ongoing need to draw attention to the significant barriers, stigma and discrimination faced by anyone experiencing mental health issues.”
If you would like more information on CTF please visit the website www.copingthroughfootball.org