A new free digital hub to help sports fans in Leicester with their mental health and wellbeing has been launched with the help of Frog Systems.
The new hub, UnitedLeicester.com, is designed to break down the stigma around mental health and encourage anyone who is struggling to seek support.
It was built using Frog Systems’ Ashia® software and is delivered through a partnership between the charitable arms of the city’s four professional sports clubs – Leicester City FC, Leicester Tigers, Leicestershire County Cricket Club and Leicester Riders. Phil Worms, CEO of Frog Systems, said: “We are proud to have worked with the clubs to create a platform of hope for the sporting community of Leicester. Fans have been hard hit by the pandemic, not least with the lack of live sport. This wellbeing hub is designed to show them that help and support is available whatever they are going through.”
Launched to mark World Mental Health Day
The platform was launched to mark World Mental Health Day 2021. It features videos from current and past players, staff members and volunteers, who have shared their experiences of depression, alcoholism, depression, and racism. Frog Systems will be working with the clubs to add new content as the platform is developed.
Matt Bray, Leicester City in the Community Health and Wellbeing Manager, said: “The new wellbeing hub has been designed for fans and supporters of Leicester’s professional sports clubs in mind. We have achieved this by using real fans, staff and legends talking about how they have overcome their own challenges.
“We all know the power of sport and loyalty fans in the city give to our sporting teams. Hopefully, this is a way of clubs giving their support and help, to guide adults to local opportunities and services.”
As well as powerful personal videos, the United Leicester hub links fans to local support organisations and a directory of wellbeing resources.
Sam Swift, manager of Leicester Tigers Foundation, said: “The fans of all our great clubs provide the foundation and platform for our clubs to succeed. We hope this hub allows the clubs to continue to give back to our fans and support alternative needs.”
Mark Barber, Head of Community Development for Leicestershire County Cricket Club, added: “The new wellbeing hub is a great way for Leicester’s professional sports clubs to provide support for fans and followers with a range of topics in mind.
“By engaging fans, staff and LCCC legends talking about how they have overcome their own challenges, the platform provides honest support and reaches a diverse audience.”
The chairman of Leicester Riders Chairman Kevin Routledge said: “We are delighted to be a part of this online platform with the other professional clubs in Leicester to support the physical and mental well-being of our staff and supporters and help them understand we all face challenges in our lives, and we are not alone, and help is at hand.
“Sport, and being part of a team, can make a very positive difference in people’s lives, and after a lifetime in sport, I am proud our club is part of this very positive initiative.”
Sporting legends welcome the new wellbeing hub
The move has also been welcomed by sporting legends who work within the community on behalf of their clubs.
Former Leicester Tigers captain and head coach Ian ‘Dosser’ Smith, said: “Mental health has long been a taboo in sport but now is the time to challenge this and help those around us to gain the right support and guidance.”
“It is so important that we recognise and offer support around the subject of mental health and wellbeing,” said Jigar Naik, former Leicestershire CCC spin bowler. “It is great to be part of this project.”
And Steve Walsh, former Leicester City captain, added: “Having each of the four Leicester professional sports clubs part of the programme, will mean more fans and people will be able to access these resources. I hope to pass on advice and experiences that will be useful to the people of Leicester.”
United Leicester is supported by a grant from NHS Charities Together, Leicester Hospitals Charity, Raising Health (Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust) and the East Midlands Ambulance Charitable Fund.
Frog Systems is gaining a growing reputation in the sporting community for its wellness software, having delivered similar mental health and wellbeing platforms for Sussex Cricket Club and the British Basketball League earlier this year.