Moreton Bay United (MBU) has signed-up for Mateship Matters, a new free suicide awareness program specifically designed to run in sports clubs.
The program is being trialled in the Moreton Bay and north Brisbane regions. So far 12 clubs, including MBU and Albany Creek Excelsior (ACE), have rolled out training or are about to.
Mateship Matters will make its first presentation to members of both clubs on Monday (September 7) in the clubhouse at Brendale at 7pm.
All club members of any age are welcome to attend the free session run by qualified personnel. ACE committee and Jets’ board members will be present.
“Mateship Matters is a suicide prevention program to curb the high levels of suicide in Australia. Suicide is the leading cause of death for young Australians aged 15 to 45.” said Caine Ansell, the MATES QLD field officer and project manager.
"The skills you will learn, how to identify what suicidal distress looks like, how to offer help, these are skills you can take with you everywhere.
“You can use them with team-mates, but also when talking to friends and family, because our aim overall is to make suicide-safer communities.”
Moreton Bay United chairman Ben Parkin said the program would operate in a friendly, unobtrusive way and help raise awareness of all aspects of mental health and well-being.
ACE President Tony Dooley fully supports the program saying it was particularly relevant now with the challenges everyone has faced and continues to face during the COVID pandemic.
Mateship Matters, based in Spring Hill, is funded by the Brisbane North Primary Health Network, as part of the National Suicide Prevention Trial.
It launched late last year and since COVID restrictions eased in July, interest has grown especially in the Moreton Bay region which has nine of the 12 signatories.
All who attend will have a 45-minute General Awareness Training (GAT) session to understand the problem of suicide and learn about why “it’s okay to talk”.
Connectors are then trained to link at-risk members with professional help and ASIST volunteers are trained to talk to those in crisis and create a help plan.
Mateship Matters field officers stay in contact with sports clubs and volunteers offering support and further training.
For more visit mateshipmatters.org.au