Bulldogs’ mental health pledge

Bulldogs’ mental health pledge

The Club has released a formal positional statement on the crucial issue of mental health, to enhance its work within the organisation and importantly, through the community it represents.

The Western Bulldogs Football Club has made a formal commitment to ensure it continues to strongly focus on the issue of mental health in our community. 

The Western Bulldogs Community Foundation has for many years done impactful work in the mental wellbeing space, ranging from youth programs across Victoria’s west as well as through its acclaimed Sons of the West and Daughters of the West programs.

The Club’s men’s and women’s football programs and administration also have a strong emphasis on caring for the mental wellbeing of its players and staff.

In taking its commitment to the next level, the Club has released a formal positional statement on the crucial issue of mental health, to enhance its work within the organisation and importantly, through the community it represents.

Key to the Club’s pledge is to proactively “build strong relationships and meaningful partnerships with organisations and professionals that specialise in mental health and wellbeing”.

The Club, through its Community Foundation, will aim to reduce the stigma surrounding mental health by encouraging open communication for those suffering from mental health issues, and to provide a safe platform to do so. 

“As a football club, we understand the size of the challenge our society faces regarding the mental health space,” said Bulldogs’ CEO Ameet Bains.

“We have already been an active participant in recognising the importance of mental wellbeing for our staff and players, as well as the community in Melbourne’s west.

Our Community Foundation will lead the way in the implementation of an elevated focus on mental health, and we understand our role as a club in championing the cause.

“We look forward to having an even stronger impact on reducing the impact of psychological distress in our community.”

The Bulldogs’ formal commitment to the mental health space was endorsed by Orygen, a youth mental health organisation with expertise in research, policy, education and innovations in care.

“Orygen is excited and delighted to support the Western Bulldogs Football Club and Western Bulldogs Community Foundation’s position statement on mental health,” said Orygen Executive Director Patrick McGorry.

“We look forward to collaborating with them to help strengthen their existing programs and to develop new initiatives to meet the mental health needs of young people in the west. 

We believe that by working together we can greatly improve the quality of mental health care with welcoming and innovative systems of care for the west, which is Orygen’s heartland.

October is National Mental Health Month, an initiative created to advocate for and raise awareness of Australian mental health. 

To raise awareness that #MentalHealthMatters, the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation and their Major Partner WorkSafe Victoria will host a free webinar this Thursday October 15, where Bulldogs Premiership star Tom Boyd will share his story about fighting a silent mental battle.

Those interested in the zoom webinar are encouraged to register here.

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