Supporting positive mental health and well being (Mooncoin)
Over 250 adults and teenagers from nine local clubs packed into the complex on 28th February 2020 for a talk in the club as part of the Mooncoin GAA Club Mental Health and Well Being Programme. You could hear a pin drop when 7 time All Ireland winning Dublin footballer Philly McMahon took to the floor to speak of the “half time talk of his life”. For 40 minutes Philly entertained, educated and captivated his audience with a deeply personal account of growing up in an environment where drugs were part of his world to ultimately, relating this to the daily battle his brother John fought against drug addiction to his untimely death at 31. He spoke about how football was his out and in it he found the strength within to drive forward, perform to the best of his ability with both his club Ballymun Kickhams and his County. John had 31 minutes in his first half. Philly finished by asking the audience what is our biggest regret is life? He went on to say that it’s time … its the one thing we always take for granted. We need to treasure every minute. John Hanlon from the GAA/Samaritans Liaison Officer outlined the work of the Samaritans and the role the GAA as a community can play in providing a support network to those who are not ok. Derek McGrath, ex Waterford County manager and current secondary school teacher at De la Salle College in Waterford spoke how we as a society have changed dramatically since his time as a teenager. In this digital age, we need to take a step back and really listen to someone opening up to you, whether that be a friend, student, work colleague or player on your team reaching out for help and perhaps assisting them in finding supports to improve their well-being. You can contact the Waterford and South East Samaritans on free call 116 123. Remember its OK not to be OK!