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Coaches complete Mental Health Accreditation Scheme for Physical Activity


By Jonny Clark

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THE first cohort of coaches to have completed the Mental Health Accreditation Scheme for Physical Activity received their certificates at the Cooper Park Wellbeing Festival.

Certificates were handed over at the Cooper Park Wellbeing Festival in Elgin.
Certificates were handed over at the Cooper Park Wellbeing Festival in Elgin.

A total of 11 coaches from nine Moray-based sports clubs received their certificates from Heidi Tweedie, champion and director of the Moray Wellbeing Hub.

At the presentation, Heidi explained: “Moray Wellbeing Hub collaborated with the Council’s Community Sports Development team to deliver a tailored programme of five mental health and wellbeing workshops over a six-month period.

“The course syllabus covered mental health first aid training, suicide prevention and trauma informed approaches.

“We are delighted to be presenting certificates at this festival to this first group of coaches to be accredited through this programme.”

The clubs that have completed this award are Moray Mountain Bike Club, Moray Table Tennis Club, Badminton Moray, Elgin Duellist Fencing Club, Forres Bluefins Swimming Club, Elgin Sports Community Trust and Walking Football groups in Elgin and Buckie.

Certificates were handed over at the Cooper Park Wellbeing Festival in Elgin.
Certificates were handed over at the Cooper Park Wellbeing Festival in Elgin.

Roy McPherson, Principal Active Schools and Community Sport Officer, added: “With as many as one in four people experiencing a mental health problem at some point in their life time, local sports club coaches are often the first to be aware that one of their club members are feeling anxious or depressed.

“Coaches therefore have an important role in supporting wellbeing and mental health in Moray and this why this award is so important.”

One of the coaches receiving their certificate was Robbie Hope from Elgin Community Sports Trust. As Director of Operations, Robbie oversees Active Recovery Moray (ARM) football sessions at the Gleaner Arena at Borough Briggs.

Robbie said: “Being presented with this certificate is very timely since it coincides with the 100th football session we have held at the Gleaner Arena since the active recovery project was established in May 2022.

“Through a shared passion for football, our sessions aim to build trust, hope and connectedness by bringing together anyone who feels marginalised or excluded by society.

“This may often be young people who have lived experience of care or of people in recovery and accessing addiction services.

“I’m delighted that one of our main volunteers Jonathan Mitchell, who has been involved in ARM since day one, has also received his certificate following the completion of the workshops.

“Jonathan’s passion and personal commitment to supporting people improve their mental wellbeing has been a major success factor for us in reaching this 100 session milestone.”

The festival also marked the launch of the Mental and Physical Activity Pathway. This is a new online resource for anyone who wants to access Moray-based sports clubs that are committed to supporting good mental health and wellbeing.

The website can be accessed at www. discoverpathwaysmoray.org.uk

The Mental Health Accreditation Scheme for Physical Activity was made possible from the Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Fund administered by tsiMORAY.


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