Tuesday 28 February 2012
Defender Martin Olsson was the star guest at the recent Blackburn Rovers Community Trust's presentation event to honour the teams and players of the Creative Support & My Life Mental Health Football League.
The Rovers star presented medals and trophies in the Ewood Park Legends Lounge to the 10 teams competing in the league, which aims to help people with mental health problems.
In a closely-fought final, Cafe Hub - which supports people in recovery from drug and alcohol misuse - were crowned league winners.
Gaz O'Hara of James Street Elite, which provides supported accommodation for people in Darwen, was named Player of the Year.
The Team of the Year award went to the Fountains Hospital, which specialises in psychiatric rehabilitation for men in Blackburn.
The Blackburn Rovers Community Trust works in partnership with Creative Support, a provider of social care services for people with learning disabilities, mental health and other needs, to support the Mental Health Football League.
The league provides opportunities for mental health service users and support staff to participate in friendly competition as a way of helping counter the isolation, stigma and discrimination surrounding mental health and emotional well-being.
As well as promoting self-confidence and social interaction, participation in the league further contributes towards encouraging and supporting individuals to make healthy lifestyle choices.
Initially funded by the PL-PFA Community Fund, the future of the league has now been assured for a further three years through grant funding from Creative Support.
The funding will also allow opportunities for participants and volunteers to gain refereeing qualifications and to take part in team building days and social inclusion events.