“We Wear More Than Our County Colours”: Gaelic Players Association Launches Powerful Mental Health Campaign
The Gaelic Players Association (GPA), has today launched a special internal campaign aimed at focussing on the emotional health and well-being of county players.
“We Wear More Than Our County Colours” is encouraging players to open up and start a conversation around the more emotional aspects of their lives, as well trying to help them develop coping mechanisms for the more stressful times in life.
In a short and wordless film, many of the issues that often trigger emotional reactions from players are highlighted, with the campaign also looking at the importance of looking out for each other and recognise signs of distress.
The campaign itself features 14 county players and the personal stories of Alan O'Mara, Conor Cusack and Niall McNamee.
“The GPA has a long-standing commitment to promoting good mental health both internally within our membership and in society in general" said GPA Chief Executive Dessie Farrell.
"Our nationwide personal coaching programme, our counselling programme and confidential members help line continue to provide critical support for players.
“However, we felt that it was important at this juncture to focus on a campaign tailored specifically for county players, identifying the various issues that can trigger strong emotional reactions for these young men. We are acutely conscious of the vulnerability of this particular demographic in terms of suicide and believe that a focussed, internal approach would help encourage players to talk more openly to each other and to identify team-mates who may be in difficulty".
Below, powerful images from the campaign. You can read more about it on the campaign website, We Wear More, here.