» Promoting Mental Health, through the power of football!

Promoting Mental Health, through the power of football!

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It’s easy to talk about the beautiful game – whether it’s pre-match tactics, the team selection, or post-match analysis with fellow Jambos. But men also need to get the things that are really bothering them off their chests.

Big Hearts is proud to deliver The Changing Room, a mental health programme in partnership with SAMH and the SPFL Trust.

This 12-week programme uses the power of football to tackle poor mental health, supporting men in their middle years to open up, improving their mental health and improving their lives.

Mikey Queen has been attending The Changing Room programme at Tynecastle Park and has benefited greatly. He is now in a much better place with his mental health, he said: “The Changing Room has literally saved my life! When I come home after the group, I feel amazing.”

Before finding The Changing Room, Mikey struggled to leave the house. He was diagnosed with schizophrenia and has battles with anxiety but since attending the programme, things have improved for him.

“I can leave the house now, I can go to the football and I’m doing brilliantly!

Before I joined, I was stuck in the house for five or six years straight. I’ve made friends for life out of the group and Dougie Gowan, SAMH Project Worker, is like a father figure to me.

For the first 12 weeks, I couldn’t really bring myself to go, and I didn’t go along every week. But for the next 12 weeks after that I went every week and I really flourished.

I’m really grateful to have found The Changing Room. I now help to run a mental health group with SAMH and I’m definitely in a better place.”

In Scotland, men in their middle years are one of the groups most at risk of experiencing poor mental health.

The Changing Room is open to men aged 30 to 64 and offers participants opportunities to meet up, engage in activities together and start positive conversations about their mental health and wellbeing.

To find out more about The Changing Room and register an interest, click here.


– January 2024


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