Football network launches campaign to tackle young male suicide

Maytree, a charity which provides support for suicide, has teamed with youth football network Copa90 to create an awareness campaign designed to help tackle suicide among young men.

Copa90 has created two online films to encourage men to talk about their mental health rather than remaining silent with the underlying message that communication saves lives.

One film features ex-footballer Leon McKenzie opening up about his battle with depression and his attempted suicide and how he got through it. In other films football fans who have lost friends and loved ones share their experiences. 

Suicide is the most common cause of death for men aged 20 to 49 on the UK according to data from the Office of National Statistics and in 2016 5,668 suicides were recorded in Great Britain, 75% of which were men. 

Natalie Howarth, director at Maytree, said: "The aim of this campaign is to not only highlight the issue of suicide amongst young men, but to reassure them that they are not alone in their suicidal thoughts. Maytree is here to support people, but more importantly you can support your mate. It really is good to talk!"

The project came together after Copa90 was approached by Innocean Worldwide, Hyundai Motor Company's global advertising division, which had worked with the football network previously.

The campaign will run across the Copa90 network from this week. 

James Kirkham, head of Copa90, added: "Football has the power to transcend culture, heal division, and unite society. In fact it is the one language the world can understand. For this reason alone, an association between Maytree and Copa90 is a natural fit. But over and beyond that, we are proud to be able to produce work like this to support Maytree's incredible work."

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