Norfolk Football’s volunteer workforce were celebrated last week as we held our 2021 Volunteer Awards, and with it announced our new Charity Partner.
Dozens of hardworking and dedicated volunteers were rightly recognised for their achievements at the event, which was held at The Space in Norwich, with special guest Darren Eadie presenting the awards alongside Norfolk FA Chairman, Michael Banham.
The occasion also presented the opportunity to formally announce Norfolk and Waveney Mind as our new Charity Partner.
The mental health charity will be working with us over the next three seasons as we look to reinforce our commitment to mental health awareness as recently announced in our new strategy.
Norfolk and Waveney Mind are announced as Norfolk FA’s Official Charity Partner for the next three seasons. (L-R: Norfolk FA Chairman, Michael Banham; Norfolk and Waveney Mind Fundraising, Marketing and Communications Lead, Rachel Walsh; Norfolk and Waveney Mind Chair of the Board of Trustees, Louise Jordan-Hall; Norfolk FA Chief Executive, Matt Carpenter; Norwich City FC Hall of Famer, Darren Eadie.)
Chair of the Board of Trustees, Louise Jordan-Hall attended the Awards with Fundraising, Marketing & Communications Lead, Rachel Walsh, where they met Chairman Michael Banham, Chief Executive Matt Carpenter, special Guest Darren Eadie and many award winners in attendance.
Chairman Michael Banham commented on the partnership: “I am really looking forward to working with Norfolk and Waveney Mind over the course of our three-year partnership and it was an honour to meet Louise and Rachel at our Volunteer Awards last week.
“Raising awareness of mental health and reducing the stigma associated to mental health issues is a key objective within our new strategy, so I’m really looking forward to working with Norfolk and Waveney Mind over the next three seasons.”
Norfolk and Waveney Mind’s Rachel Walsh (left) and Louise Jordan-Hall (right) with Norfolk FA Chairman Michael Banham (centre).
Louise Jordan-Hall took to the stage after the announcement to deliver a hard-hitting speech which highlighted the rising importance of mental health awareness in society.
Statistics such as 801 Norfolk residents have died by suicide in the last 10 years, and 84% of people will experience a mental health problem in their lifetime had a visible impact on members of the audience and all in attendance were left with a clear appreciation of the part football and all of us can play in supporting those with mental health issues.
Chair of the Board of Trustees at Norfolk and Waveney Mind, Louise Jordan-Hall Norfolk addresses the audience at the 2021 Volunteer Awards.
Norfolk and Waveney Mind Chair of Trustees, Louise Jordan-Hall spoke of her experience at the Volunteer Awards last week as well as her optimism of the partnership with Norfolk FA: “It was fantastic to see so many volunteers recognised for their hard work and commitment to local football. As a volunteer myself, I know the positive benefits volunteering can have on mental wellbeing, from strengthening ties to the community to broadening your support network.
“We work to ensure that no one in Norfolk and Waveney has to face a mental health problem alone and partnerships like this enable us to reach far more people, helping to build healthier, more resilient communities.
“Our partnership with Norfolk FA will enable us to reach far more people, utilising the wide reach that grassroots football has to raise awareness, reduce stigma as well as proving valuable mental health training to clubs and leagues to improve education within football.”
Fundraising, Marketing and Communications Lead, Rachel Walsh added: “We are delighted to be embarking on 3-year partnership with Norfolk FA, especially at a time when the need for our services is greater than ever before.
“We are busier than ever, 60% of adults and young people who did not experience poor mental health before the pandemic are now experiencing mental health issues.
“Mental health affects us all. Whether it’s you, someone in your family, a friend or a work colleague. We couldn’t do what we do without partnerships likes this and the support of people in Norfolk and Waveney. Thank you to Norfolk FA for helping us to raise awareness and continue to provide local support, to local people, when they need us most.”
For more information about Norfolk and Waveney Mind, please visit norfolkandwaveneymind.org.uk.