Western Bulldogs Premiership player Tom Boyd has thrown his support behind this year’s Sons of the West program, which kicks off in March.
Since his retirement after the 2019 AFL season, Boyd has been a strong advocate for mental health and openly discussed his own experience battling this often-taboo topic.
Following last year’s covid-19 lockdowns, and the ongoing struggles related to the global pandemic, there is no time more important to shine a light on mental health.
Sons of the West is arguably Australia’s most successful men’s health program and has been delivered by the Western Bulldogs Community Foundation since 2014. The free program, run in conjunction with local council partners, educates men on important issues impacting their health, with mental health to be a key topic addressed alongside nutrition, gender equality and intercultural understanding.
At a basic level, the Sons of the West program aims to encourage men to consider their health and talk about it with their friends, while encouraging those around them to do the same.
Each week, the program is split into a one-hour education component before a one-hour session of physical activity.
Boyd will be joining each Sons of the West group for a session dedicated to decreasing the stigma of mental health, and encouraging those who need it to seek help.
“I am excited to be involved once again in the Sons of the West program in 2021 and can’t wait to be a part of the great value that it provides to our communities,” Boyd said.
“If 2020 taught us anything, it’s that things change quickly, and being able to deal with the stress associated with change is more important than ever.
“With this in mind, a huge priority for all of us moving forward is taking care of our mental health, looking after our physical health and investing in the interpersonal relationships we have in our lives and our communities.”
There are still places left in Sons of the West program in the following locations, as well as for the online course. All programs will be run in accordance with government covid-19 restrictions.
Register for Sons of the West at the following locations:
- Newport (Tuesdays, 7-9pm) - Register here
- Laverton (Thursdays, 7-9pm) - Register here
- Fraser Rise (Tuesdays, 7-9pm) - Register here
- West Melton, afternoons (Thursdays, 4.30-6.30pm) - Register here
- West Melton, evenings (Thursdays, 7-9pm) - Register here
- West Footscray (Tuesdays, 6.30-8.45pm) - Register here
- Braybrook (Wednesdays, 6-8.15pm) - Register here
- St Albans (Tuesdays, 6.30-8.30pm) - Register here
- Sunbury (Mondays, 6.30-8.30pm) - Register here
- Sebastopol (Wednesdays, 7-9pm) - Register here
- Online program session (Mondays, 7-8.30pm) - Register here