Today (Wednesday 21 September), blOKes and Newcastle University Rugby Club have officially launched their new 2022-23 men’s mental health and sponsorship partnership.
Having initially been announced on University Mental Health Day, blOKes has become the rugby club’s front-of-shirt sponsor for the 2022-23 BUCS season, and will work to provide bespoke men’s mental health workshops and educational sessions for players, coaches, and management.
Tom Home, Founder of blOKes, said: “I am delighted to have kickstarted this exciting new partnership with Newcastle University Rugby Club. For me, this collaboration is very personal as it was at Northumbria University that my mental health first began to decline and worsen. I know first-hand how tough life can be at university, coupled with the additional stress and pressure that can arise through playing sport, so its great to be working alongside Newcastle University Rugby Club to help its members better understand and manage their own mental health.”
Tom Quinlan, President of Newcastle University Rugby Club, said: “I am delighted, both personally and for the club, that we have been able to form this relationship with blOKes. The vision – initially set out by former Newcastle University’s blOKes student ambassador Sandy Ibbotston, was to create more than the standard ‘cash for ads’ sponsorship, and I feel that with this, we have created a unique and special partnership between the club and sponsor.
“The opportunity for our players to receive support and education around mental health and wellbeing is invaluable, both for their time here and their journeys beyond university. I am immensely proud that our club will wear the blOKes logo and represent the cause of men’s mental health every time we step on a pitch, and I would like to say a massive thank you to blOKes from all of the club’s 200 members.”
blOKes’ clinical mental health partner Willow Grove Consultants, who are based in Gateshead, will also provide free one-to-one consultations for players and coaches in need of additional personalised support.