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Coventry College supporting national mental health initiative

Loui Whitmore

@CoventryCollege has signed up to a national mental health initiative that is using sport as a vital tool to improve young people’s wellbeing.

The city’s leading further education provider has become part of the Mental Health Ambassador programme, which has been developed by the Association of Colleges in partnership with the charity, Mind.

Loui Whitmore, a first year student in Coventry College’s Rugby Education Programme, has volunteered to be the College’s dedicated Mental Health Ambassador for the next academic year.

It means that around 70 students within the College’s Academy of Sport – which includes rugby, football, and the Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme (TASS) – will have a go-to contact in their peer group to explore types of exercise that could boost their mood.

The ambassador role will see Loui undergo training that will involve devising his own personal wellbeing plan that he can share with his student peers, which will be supervised by a College staff member.

Loui said: “It’s important that everyone feels like they have support during these unprecedented times that we are living in – which is why I was so keen to volunteer for this opportunity.

“As students we have had to adapt to the way that we combine practical sessions with academic study. Hopefully the wellbeing plan that I am developing as part of my ambassador training will benefit other students too should they need it.

“At a time when we are all being asked to stay indoors as much as possible, it’s important to maintain creative ways of exercising not just the body, but the mind too.”

Pete Glackin, Academies Manager at Coventry College, is supporting Loui with his role as a Mental Health Ambassador.

Pete added: “All of our sporting programmes give students a taste of what life is like for elite athletes – including following nutritional advice and recording their diet, as well as video analysis of training and games – and this mental health initiative is an extension of this approach.

“Mental health is a topic that is at the forefront of society now – particularly elite sport – so it’s crucial that the next generation of athletes, such as the ones we have at Coventry College, are aware of ways that they can help themselves, and others, if they are going through a difficult time.”

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