Friday 30th September 2022

BACK ONSIDE are delighted to announce their new partnership with Dumbarton Football Club.

Founded in 1872, Dumbarton FC are one of the oldest football clubs in Scotland and have a long history as one of the top teams of the nineteenth century winning the first two seasons of the Scottish Football League. Back Onside recently launched their Positive Pitches campaign, which aims to break the stigma attached to mental health and the football industry, so this seems like a natural partnership which will be a great move for both sides.

As part of the partnership, Back Onside will be providing 1-1 professional private counselling for players & staff where required, changing room chats to all players and staff, mental health workshops and our Welfare Officer will attend games & training whenever possible and there will be various other opportunities as the partnership grows. Dumbarton FC will also commit to fundraise throughout the year for Back Onside as well as raising awareness for mental health within the football industry and beyond.

Libby Emmerson, Back Onside Founder said: “We are so excited about our new partnership with Dumbarton FC. After working with several football clubs over the last 5 years, we recognised there was a real need for our services and support prompting us to launch our Positive Pitches campaign last year. We have since partnered with various teams in Scotland to promote positive mental health within the footballing world, where our experienced team provide a professional, safe, confidential space and support network to anyone who reaches out to us for help. We are absolutely delighted to have Dumbarton FC onboard and are really looking forward to getting involved with the club and seeing how the partnership grows.”

Stevie Farrell, Manager of Dumbarton Football Club said: “If we are to be successful this season, our players and staff don’t just need to be physically on their game, they need to be in good mental condition as well. This partnership will go a long way to ensuring that this can be the case. Football is a roller coaster for all those involved and our work with Back Onside will ensure that our players are equipped to deal with the journey.”

Antonia Love, General Manager of Dumbarton Football Club said: “Back Onside’s work has benefited so many people, in and out of football, since it was founded and we are delighted that we are on board with each other. We will work hard to raise awareness of mental health, not just in football but in all walks of life, and let people know there is support out there if needed.”

Back Onside’s Positive Pitches campaign was launched in 2021 aimed at football clubs and players to promote positive mental health within the industry. After working closely with several clubs and players at all levels over the last few years, and realising there was a lack of support available, the charity decided to launch the campaign to let clubs and players know that there is support out there.

Determined to break the stigma attached to mental health and the football industry, the campaign targets football clubs of all levels in a bid to let players & staff know they are there should they need support as well as educating clubs on ways to support players and promote a positive environment. Footballers are often at risk of suffering with their mental health as they face high pressure within their jobs, injuries, online abuse and scrutiny resulting in feelings of anxiety and depression. Many footballers also have other jobs outside of football which adds extra stress and pressure to daily life.

All of this can result in their mental health reaching an all-time low and, as many deal with this silently, by the time others realise, it can too often be too late. Throughout the last few of years, the charity have seen an increase in the number of people reaching out to them for help, in particular football players in need of support. This surge spurred founder Libby to launch Positive Pitches in a bid to ensure every club & player knows who they are and how to contact them should they need them.

Back Onside are a Scottish Charity who support people who may be struggling with their Mental Health, their work sees them working at all levels of Sport and also amazing work in the wider Communities, schools and businesses in various capacities. They offer a variety of support levels and have the experience and expertise within their network including professional 1 to 1 counselling, sport rehabilitation, mental health workshops, educational programmes and focussed activities to assist with recovery and promote a healthier lifestyle.

Dumbarton Football Club

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