Former Republic of Ireland soccer internationals Ray Houghton and John Aldridge joined participants in a new Social Soccer community initiative, which aims to promote positive mental health among men in the region.
Houghton (pictured) and Aldridge were part of an FAI delegation which visited IT Sligo on Tuesday. They were joined by the FAI Chief Executive John Delaney. The group met with and watched the Social Soccer participants play their lunchtime game, which is held every week at the Institute’s Knocknarea Arena.
Social Soccer is an initiative organised by the Sligo Sport and Recreation Partnership (SSRP) in conjunction with the Health Service Executive (HSE), which began earlier this year. It offers men in the region an opportunity to play a regular/ once off game of soccer.
It has been devised to provide a new community level group, which is open to all men interested in soccer. They can be a regular member of the group and can take part as often or as they like.
The aims of the group are to:
1) Develop a space where people can drop in to play soccer.
2) Develop a space where people can engage with sport and from it enhance their mental Health and wellbeing.
3) Promote social interaction through the engagement with collective sports.
The FAI delegation is visiting Sligo all this week ahead of the Association’s AGM for 2015 in Sligo’s Clarion Hotel on Saturday.
Pictured at the FAI visit to IT Sligo L-R: John Aldridge, John Delaney – FAI CEO, Gerry Dalton – IT Sligo, Gordon Ryan – IT Sligo, Ray Houghton, Daniel Furey – Knocknarea Arena.