This Friday when the Phoenix take on heated rivals at Western United at Sky Stadium, they’ll not only be playing to win in front of their home crowd - they’ll also be raising awareness about an important social issue in New Zealand – mental health.
The Wellington Phoenix will be partnering up with the Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand (MHFNZ) for the match on Friday 21 February at 7.15pm, naming this the club’s annual Mental Health Round and undertaking a range of fundraising and awareness activities to promote the issue.
General Manager David Dome says that the club is keen for this to be an ongoing relationship.
“Mental health is arguably New Zealand’s number one social issue and the Wellington Phoenix wants to take a lead in this space as a club, and to support MHFNZ who do a fantastic job in addressing an issue which affects people’s lives across all cultures, socio-economic classes and geographic areas.”
“So many people in New Zealand suffer from mental health issues in one form or another, including our own players and staff, so this is an opportunity for us to shine a spotlight on this issue and let people know they’re not alone - and that there’s help available when they need it.
“We don’t want this to be a one-off event for us either, it’s important for us to have an ongoing role in the community as an advocate for positive mental health and wellbeing.”
Fans attending the match will have an opportunity to support MHFNZ by making a donation, or by supporting a special Trade Me auction that the Phoenix will launch at the start of the match.
Dome says that this match is one he hopes will draw a large Wellington crowd this Friday.
“Coming back from our match at Eden Park in front of 15,000 people, we saw the amazing positive impact that a big crowd has on our players; they feed off it and it encourages them to put on a show for the fans.
“To see them buzzing after the match about the sheer size of the crowd, makes me really hope that we get a great Wellington crowd this Friday against Western United – it’s good for the club, good for the players and of course it’s a great result for MHFNZ as well.”
The Wellington Phoenix’s Mental Health Round is this Friday 21 February, versus Western United at Sky Stadium from 7.15pm.
About the Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand
The Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand is a charity that works towards creating a society free from discrimination, where all people enjoy positive mental health & wellbeing.
We work to influence individuals, whanau, organisations and communities to improve and sustain their mental health and reach their full potential.
Find out more at www.mentalhealth.org.nz