RL Cares ‘Offload’ course coming to Bradford, Halifax & Huddersfield

‘Rugby League Cares’ is delighted to announce that ‘Offload’, its men’s mental fitness programme, is coming to Bradford, Halifax and Huddersfield.

‘Offload’ is already being delivered at six professional Rugby League clubs: Featherstone Rovers, Leeds Rhinos, St Helens, Salford Red Devils, Warrington Wolves and Widnes Vikings, who will now be joined by Bradford Bulls, Halifax Panthers and Huddersfield Giants.

The programme is a free ten-week course of one-hour fixtures, designed to equip men with the skills, tools and techniques needed to manage their own mental health and provide help for others.

‘Offload’ fixtures usually take place at the host club’s stadium, and are led by former Rugby League players who share their own life experiences in dealing with stress, anxiety, depression and other challenging situations.

The presenters include ex-internationals Keith Senior, Lee Crooks, Paul Wood, Robbie Hunter-Paul, Johnny Lawless, Shaun Lunt, Paul Broadbent and Kevin Larroyer.

‘RL Cares’ Head of Community, Emma Goldsmith said: “We are thrilled that Bradford Bulls, Halifax Panthers and Huddersfield Giants have joined the expanding ‘Offload’ family, and we are looking forward to enhancing the lives of men across Bradford, Calderdale and Kirklees.

“’Offload’ has been proven to work since 2017. More than 2,500 men have taken part in ‘Offload’ and have taken away lots of advice and insights that have helped turn their lives around.

“’Offload’ has a fantastic ability not only to change lives, but to save lives as well. The fixtures are a great way for men who may be struggling, or who know someone who is having a tough time, to tackle sensitive issues in an engaging, fun and confidential way.”

The delivery of ‘Offload’ in Bradford, Halifax and Huddersfield has been made possible with support from the West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership.

Paul Mitchell, Head of Foundation at the Bradford Bulls Foundation, said: “Many, many people are struggling with the pressures of Covid 19, and more will do so in the aftermath. Mental fitness has always been critical but now, more than ever, we need to do as much as we can to provide support to those who need it.

“Whether you are struggling due to unemployment, lack of social contact or financial problems, or you just need an outlet beyond the four walls of home, we are here for you. The Bulls Foundation is proud to support the wellbeing of the people of Bradford through our delivery of the fantastic ‘Offload’ programme.

“We hope to make a positive difference for the men who take part and provide long term support for their overall fitness and wellbeing.”

Huddersfield Giants’ Community Trust, Head of Sport, Dan Wilczynski said: “Being given the opportunity to deliver such an important project as ‘Offload’ is magnificent, both for the Trust and for the area of Kirklees.

“We are all extremely excited to see this programme start to make a difference to men within our community.

“With ‘Offload’ we have a really great opportunity to tackle mental fitness and make a positive change.”

Chris Mitchell, Project Lead at Halifax Panther Foundation, said: “We are looking forward to working with Rugby League Cares to deliver this fantastic programme to men in Halifax and across Calderdale.

“Our involvement in ‘Offload’ builds on the success we had with ‘Back Onside’, which helped men tackle their physical health. It is just as important for everyone to look after their mental fitness and Offload has an important part to play in that.”

For more information on ‘Offload’ and ‘Rugby League Cares’, including contact details for ‘Offload’ at Bradford, Halifax and Huddersfield, please visit www.rugbyleaguecares.org/offload

For more information about the ‘West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership’, visit https://www.wyhpartnership.co.uk/

View a video explaining the nature and purpose of Offload by going here.