Wed 20 Jan 2021 11:52

Mental Health Support from Bicester RUFC

Thanks to grants from the National Lottery Community Fund and Sport England, Bicester RUFC is proud to launch our new Mental Health Programme. This is a first-of-a-kind programme at a community rugby club.

Working with our delivery partner, Street Games, Bicester RUFC will be delivering Mental Health Awareness workshops for all volunteers online, as well as in-person training to ensure we have qualified Mental Health First Aiders in every section of the club, from U5 to U16 boys and girls, U18 Colts, and our Senior Men and Women (Vixens) by the end of the 2020/21 season.

This training programme is just starting, and once complete, Bicester RUFC will be the best club in Oxfordshire – possibly even in the south east – for mental health support. We won't stop there. This is a priority for the board.

It is estimated that 1 in 4 people will experience mental health problems each year in the UK. For these people, the pressures and strains of life and work can act as a catalyst to mental health problems, with the most common being depression and anxiety.

The links between good physical health and mental health are well recognised. Playing rugby provides physical benefits which in turn is beneficial for mental health and wellbeing.

Find out more about how rugby tackles mental health.

Bicester RUFC is an official partner of LooseHeadz – a rugby movement to get more of us talking about mental health. All Bicester Members can receive a 15% discount on clothing and accessories from their online store when using the code: BRUFC. 100% of every purchase goes toward the LooseHeadz Foundation to help tackle to stigma around mental health.


The RFU has teamed up with Mind, one of the leading mental health charities in England and Wales, to provide information and guidance for anyone involved in rugby who may be dealing with mental health problems and those supporting them.

The RFU is also a signatory of the Mental Health Charter for Sport and Recreation, promoting and adopting good mental health policies and best practice.

UK Coaching’s Mental Health in Coaching Guidance has some useful information on the role coaches play in supporting others, emotionally as well as physically. It highlights the impact that this can have on a coach’s own mental health and provides guidance on how coaches can understand and maintain their own mental health.

Urgent Support


Childline is especially for children. A free, private and confidential service where children can talk about anything, whatever their worry, whenever it is needed. There are a number of useful resources and valuable advice on the Childline website.

Tel: 0800 1111 (Free 24-hour number)


The Samaritans are available for anyone who needs them.  They provide a confidential, non-judgemental and safe environment for people to talk about concerns and issues thy are having.

Tel: 116 123


Additional Resources


Your online mental wellbeing community – free, safe and anonymous support. Contains helpful articles, discussion boards, messaging and live chat with trained professionals, and a daily journal to track feelings and emotions and reflect on how you're doing.


“I really like how you can share your problems anonymously and have help from others. It makes me feel accepted and that people will not judge me.”

Oxfordshire Mind

If you’re a young person and you’re struggling with your mental health or wellbeing, get in touch with Oxfordshire Mind 

Call: 01865 247788


Part of Oxfordshire Mind, Safe Haven offers short term, out of hours support to adults experiencing mental health crisis in Oxfordshire. They do not define what crisis is, anyone over 18 can self-refer by giving Safe Haven a call.

Banbury: 01295 270004
Oxford: 01865 903 037

You can call from Friday – Monday from 5:00pm-9:00pm

Hub of Hope

The Hub of Hope is the world’s first of its kind mental health database bringing grassroots and national mental health services together in one place for the first time ever. Using the location of web browser or mobile devices, the cloud-based web application allows anyone, anywhere to find the nearest source of support for any mental health issue, from depression and anxiety to PTSD and suicidal thoughts, as well as providing a ‘talk now’ button connecting users directly to the Samaritans.

It is currently the biggest and most comprehensive resource of its kind, with more than 1,200 validated support networks already registered on the web app and this number increasing each day. It has been endorsed by the Samaritans and 25 other national mental health support organisations and trusts.

Bicester RUFC Mental Health Programme Partners

Loose Headz

Bicester RUFC is a proud partner of Loose Headz, a charity with the mission to advance the dialogue around mental health in rugby union.

Young Minds

Young Minds is a charity specifically focused on promoting positive mental health in children and young people. They offer good resources, especially for families who are concerned about their children.

Street Games

Our BRUFC Mental Health Programme delivery partner. 

StreetGames harnesses the power of sport to create positive change in the lives of disadvantaged young people right across the UK. StreetGames' work helps to make young people and their communities healthier, safer and more successful.

Mental Health First Aid England

MHFA England accredits the Mental Health training provided by our delivery partner.

Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) came to England in 2007 and was developed and launched under the Department of Health: National Institute for Mental Health in England as part of a national approach to improving public mental health. Mental Health First Aid England was launched as a community interest company in 2009. 

Since 2007, more than 114,000 Mental Health First Aiders have been trained in England.