It’s time to talk about Mental Health – Darryl, Football Coach, Bendigo

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My name is Daryl Wilson, I live in Bendigo
and I’m now Assistant Coach with the Strathfieldsaye Footy Club and help in a mentoring role with
the players. Strathfieldsaye Footy Club I come to seven
years ago as the Head Coach and decided to take on a pretty new job cause they were only
two years old and during that period we were able to win three premierships as a senior
club. Being a community-based club we were able
to not only, as I said be successful and play and win and play each week but we’ve also
had the obligation we felt as a club, to help and support young players. One of the, one of the big things for me as
coach is to make sure that players are stable. Um… when I, when I first talk to a player
it’s not about football; it’s more about how are they going in their life first. Yeah, look I’m 52 years of age so I’ve
been around footy clubs for a long time. When I first started following and then playing
football I think mental health was seen as something that you ah you dealt with something
internally. You didn’t, you didn’t show that you were, in those days, weak um which
looking back now is terrible. I had the death of my own father four years
ago and felt that I just needed something, just a little bit of support to help. My dad, like he died really quickly so it
was even like you know … he was mad on sport, footy so he was a great supporter of me footy-wise.
When it happens it hits home, but yeah. Thankfully now we have the ability to say
it’s ok I’m battling, I need help, I’ve got anxiety, I’m depressed, and you know
I think we are much better at helping each other out than we ever have been. I think sporting clubs, any club to be honest
whether it’s a band, or you know dance club it doesn’t matter, I think having people
around you is the most important thing for mental health. That’s being able to talk to people, getting
help, looking for help and it’s ok to do that. I think that’s the cultural change. I think it’s important for everybody that
we get it out there that mental health is not something you have to deal with by yourself.
It’s not an individual thing. We all suffer in some shape or form with mental
health and we need to get it out there that there is help, there is support and there
are people who can get you through the bad times. I think it’s really important that the message
is very clear it’s ok to ask, it’s ok to seek help; it’s not something you have
to deal with yourself anymore. There is so much support out there we just gotta ask for it.

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