Partnership With Mental Health Ireland

Lidl G4M & O = +VE MH…..Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others is good for the head as well as the body!

The Ladies Gaelic Football Association (LGFA) was delighted to announce a new partnership earlier this year. In October the LGFA teamed up with Mental Health Ireland (MHI) in order to promote healthier physical and mental lifestyleS for Irish women.

The LGFA and MHI will be increasing awareness of mental health issues and preventative steps through Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others, a LGFA development initiative, and Building Resilience Together, a MHI awareness initiative.

One of the main reasons that women give for joining, and sticking with Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others is the fun that they have, the friends that they have and simply put, how good it makes them feel.

 

When you listen to participants talk about Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others it is clear that the most important benefit of involvement is the feel good factor. It is the mental instead of the physical that comes to the fore when women are asked about the benefits of involvement. It was this fact that was the spark for the idea of a partnership between Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others and Mental Health Ireland.

Both CEOs Brian Howard (MHI) AND Helen O’Rourke (LGFA) think that both associations were trying to achieve a similar aim –healthier living in Irish society – so working together seemed like a sensible option.

 

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In 2010, Mental Health Ireland launched an initiative entitled Building Resilience Together as a means of informing all age groups of society of the importance of developing individual and community strengths that will help people to cope with and bounce back from the challenges and setbacks that life presents.

 

Building Resilience Together outlines 10 key steps that an individual can take in order to build resilience towards potential mental health problems. In simpler terms, ten things that will help you lead a more positive life so you will be able to cope with the setbacks that we all encounter at one stage or another. When you read through a list of these ten recommendations it is clear that Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others ticks many of these boxes.

MHI and the LGFA want to facilitate Irish women making improvement to their mental and physical health. Have a look at the ten tips from MHI and how they relate to Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others. – the simple action of putting yourself out of your comfort zone and trying out Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others can get you well on your way to improving your life.

1. MHI: Have the courage to be imperfect.

G4M & O: Nobody cares if you can’t kick the football the first night, or even the tenth night! It’s all about getting out there and giving it a go.

2. MHI: Take time for yourself

G4M & O: Women who are usually ferrying their families around and standing on the sidelines cheering on their kids are now doing something for themselves. This is their time every week to put themselves first.

3. MHI: Sign up for that course, join that club.

G4M & O: Join that Gaelic4Mothers & Others club.

4. MHI: Be active every day in as many ways as you can.

G4M & O: Gaelic4Mothers & Others can provide that variety of weekly activity in your life. Even if you go to a gym or go out walking, getting physical activity in an environment where there are lots of interaction with women from your area makes you feel more connected to t hose around you.

5. MHI: Spend time with people who make you feel good.

G4M & O: Participants consistently report of how much fun they have and how many friends they make.

6. MHI: Laugh out loud every day.

G4M & O: At any Gaelic4Mothers & Others event, the laughter can be heard for miles.

7. MHI: Get your ZZZZs

G4M & O: You’ll sleep well after running around a football pitch for an hour!

8. MHI: It’s all about team work!

G4M & O: Joining Lidl Gaelic4Mothers&Others is joining a team. Participants don’t just stick to their hour training a week. They start organising other activities for the group. We’ve found them working together in all sorts of ways to do things for themselves but also to better their community.

9. MHI: Remember, this too shall pass.

G4M & O: When we encounter setbacks there is a danger to become overly focused on problems. There are times in our lives when things can seem very negative. Participation in Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others at times like these is invaluable. You may think that you have more important things to be thinking about but getting out for an hour and doing something refreshing and positive does boost energy to cope with problems you are encountering.

10. MHI: Talk out your troubles.

G4M & O: Participants are part of a team, but more importantly a team of women from their locality who are highly likely to have encountered similar problems or troubles. Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others provides and increased support network for women in their area. Each time they turn up for training it is a reminder that they are not on their own and there are people around that they can talk to.

Three of the major cornerstones of Building Resilience Together are signing up for and getting involved in activities in your local area; staying connected with family, friends and community; and doing things that make you laugh and feel good. All of these actions will improve an individual’s well-being and their sense of connectedness to those around them. Participation in Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others provides all of these things.

The ethos of Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others mirrors the ethos of the Building Resilience Together initiative. Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others is a recreational form of Ladies Gaelic Football that focuses on getting women who are usually on the sidelines more involved in their local club and community. However it is not only about getting women physically active but more importantly getting them to engage with other women in their area. The social aspect of Lidl Gaelic4Mothers & Others and the support network it creates for women is just as important as the physical exercise.

For both Mental Health Ireland and the Ladies Gaelic Football Association this new partnership is a positive step that will only increase awareness amoung Irish women that there are very simply things that can be done in your life that will have a far reaching positive impact. And for those of you who were fond of the abbreviation ‘G4M’, try this one out…. G4M + O= +VE MH!!!

 

For further Information on Building Resilience and Mental Health Ireland visit www.mentalhealthireland.ie