Sale Sharks joins LooseHeadz mission with new mental health lead

Sale Sharks to become the first Premiership club to officially partner with LooseHeadz

Sale Sharks Foundation Mental Wellbeing Manager Eddie Owen takes the new role

Sharks will also support LooseHeadz’ ambition to put a mental health lead into every rugby club

Sale Sharks has appointed its first club-wide mental health lead as it becomes the first Gallagher Premiership club to officially partner up with mental health movement LooseHeadz.

Eddie Owen, who works as Mental Wellbeing Manager at the club’s charity partner, the Sale Sharks Foundation, will take up the role, which will see him support the club’s players and staff.

The partnership will also see Sale Sharks support Wilmslow-based LooseHeadz with their mission to tackle the stigma around mental health, and place a mental-health lead – known as a ‘LooseHead’ – in every rugby club worldwide.

And that will start with a special event in November where Sharks will introduce LooseHeadz to its ‘100 Clubs’ network of rugby clubs all over the North West.

Sale Sharks CEO Sid Sutton said: “We know that the mental health and wellbeing of our players and staff is every bit as important as their physical condition when it comes to making sure they are ready to perform at their very best on and off the pitch.

“But more importantly than that, we want to create an environment where our players and staff become better people during their time here, and feel supported in every aspect of their lives.

“We want to be so much more than a rugby club and the partnership with LooseHeadz is a perfect way to make an impact both at home and further afield in our communities.

“The LooseHeadz team has ambitious targets and we’re really excited to see how we can support them to make as big an impact as possible in rugby clubs and beyond.”

Sale Sharks players Manu Tuilagi, Sam James and Luke James are already ambassadors for LooseHeadz, and they’ll be joined in that role by Sharks Women’s co-captains Lauren Delany and Georgie Perris-Redding.

The club is also committed to rolling out LooseHeadz’ mental health toolkit to all junior academy and Centre of Excellence players and participants in the Sale Sharks Foundation rugby camps.

Sharks’ new LooseHeadz mental health lead Eddie said: “LooseHeadz is doing some amazing work and I’m honoured to have the chance to support that within our club. Our player and staff all have mental health and we all need to check in with each other and support other.”

Rob Shotton, Co-founder of LooseHeadz, said “We’re delighted to be partnering with Sale Sharks to tackle the stigma of mental health together.

“LooseHeadz was born out of a conversation right here in the North West of England so we’re delighted to be working with the club to further our mission of placing a mental health lead at every rugby club.

“The three co-founders of LooseHeadz are all Sale Sharks supporters so this is partnership is a special one and we can’t wait to get started!”

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