This Saturday 7th January, Premiership clubs GHA RFC and Selkirk Rugby Club are coming together to focus on mental health and wellbeing with the inaugural ‘Breathing Space Cup’ game. Both clubs have forged close links with Breathing Space in their common goal to go beyond rugby itself and provide mental health support for their club members.
In a friendship starting as schoolboys playing for Edinburgh Schools in 1975, GHA Past President Stuart Lang and the current Selkirk Vice President Graham Marshall are testimony to how involvement in rugby can go beyond the game.
Stuart Lang: “The idea of an annual Breathing Space match came out of discussions between the clubs, their committees and Breathing Space National Co-ordinator Tony McLaren, and we are all delighted to be able to use this platform to help promote the importance of mental health and wellbeing.”
The ‘Breathing Space Cup’ will be a fixture played every season between the two clubs, alternating venues each year to highlight the incredible work Breathing Space do across Scotland as well as emphasising the necessity to make mental health and wellbeing in sport a priority.
Graham Marshall: “Breathing Space supports people for a whole range of mental health issues. It is such a privilege to be part of Selkirk RFC as they participate in the match against GHA where mental wellbeing takes centre stage. Events like this remind us about the importance of our mental health, encourage us to talk about it and help anyone who needs support to access it.”
The inaugural game will take place at Braidholm this Saturday 7th January as part of the Tennent’s Premiership league and will kick-off GHA’s Wellbeing Week. Following the home game event, GHA will be hosting an open evening with Breathing Space on Wednesday 11th January, 7pm, for all members, players, and the local community to attend. This will be a free event, held at the club, providing a safe space for anyone looking to find out more about Breathing Space and the work they do.
Launched in 2002, Breathing space is a free, confidential, phone and webchat service for anyone in Scotland over the age of 16 experiencing low mood, depression or anxiety. With phone lines open Weekdays: Monday-Thursday 6pm to 2am and Weekend: Friday 6pm-Monday 6am, Breathing Space provides a safe environment for those looking for support.
Tony McLaren, Breathing Space National Coordinator, said: “It’s great to see the importance that both GHA and Selkirk RFC attach to taking care of the mental health and wellbeing of their club communities. Rugby offers many benefits to mental wellbeing, combining physical activity with being outdoors and working together as a positive team. Even so, anyone can feel low or stressed, so it’s fantastic that players and staff are talking openly about mental health and highlighting services out there which can offer support to the wider community. I’m here to encourage anyone who feels they would benefit from talking about their feelings or concerns to call us at Breathing Space on 0800 83 85 87 or visit www.breathingspace.scot to use our web chat service. Our team are here for you, so if you are feeling down, don’t hesitate to get in touch.”
MATCH DAY DETAILS
GHA RFC v Selkrik RFC
‘Breathing Space Cup’
Saturday 7th January 2023
Braidholm, KO 2pm
Game Tickets & Pre-Match Lunch bookings are available now: https://www.citizenticket.co.uk/events/gha-rugby-club/gha-v-selkirk-breathing-space-game/
We will be holding a post-Christmas foodbank drive as part of the GHA Wellbeing Week in partnership with our Associated Club Glasgow City Foundation to provide canned and dried goods, for East Renfrewshire Larder. We appreciate all the incredible donations our Club Members dropped off before Christmas so if you are able, we are asking for small donations to be made at the entry gate to Saturday’s game to support local families facing difficulties in the New Year. If you were unable to to donate before Christmas and wish to do so, donations can also be dropped off to the Scott Room meeting room during club opening hours from Friday 6th January – Friday 13th January.