October 21, 2021

Wv Health

Health Simplified

Dursley team up with the NHS to help tackle mental health stigma

Dursley rugby club have teamed up with NHS to tackle the stigma around mental health.

Front row player Melissa Bundy has suffered mental health issues and is part of the reason that the club want to tackle the issue.

The rugby club has become ‘more than just teammates’ to the front rower since joining them.



Dursley Rugby Club

Bundy, 31, said: “I suffer with depression and anxiety, so going to the club when I joined was a massive thing for me.

“But I was welcomed with open arms and now these ladies are more than just team mates; they are my mates and my extended family.

“The game and the club has made me more confident about myself and I look forward to the future of Dursley ladies.”

Dursley have joined forces with the Gloucestershire Tackling Stigma partnership, a multi-agency group which works to reduce the stigma around mental illness.



Dursley rugby club tackle mental health stigma
Dursley rugby club tackle mental health stigma

The Tackling Stigma group includes NHS Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group, 2gether NHS Foundation Trust, Gloucestershire County Council, Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Independence Trust, Stroud District Council, Gloucestershire Constabulary, ISIS Women’s Centre and Healthwatch Gloucestershire.

Jane Bullows, Sport and Health Development Manager at Stroud District Council, said: “We know that one in four people will experience a mental health issue at some point in their lives and we want to encourage them to feel more safe, supported and able to talk about their feelings.



Jack Robson, Josh Holloway, Olive and Charlie Jones, Talia Tongaulia, Jatie Thomson and James Drennon open Dursley's new changing facilities
Jack Robson, Josh Holloway, Olive and Charlie Jones, Talia Tongaulia, Jatie Thomson and James Drennon open Dursley’s new changing facilities

“Sport is known for its inclusivity and we aim to encourage sports clubs, whether it be spectators, players, coaches or officials, to be more aware of their mental and emotional wellbeing and to know where to gain further support.

“Dursley RFC is a great proponent of a positive and proactive club and the first to show their support for this campaign.”

The group, which meets regularly, has a focus on raising awareness of mental health issues and tackling stigma within sport. As part of this, the group has produced a series of themed stickers and is working with a number of National Governing Bodies and sports clubs to spread the word.