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Darlington Football Club

Ray Simpson / 17th December 2020

Enrol on a free mental health course with the Learning Curve Group!

Enrol on a free mental health course with the Learning Curve Group!

Mental health presents one of the greatest challenges to our society

Darlington Football Club is acutely aware of the challenges to our supporters and the community at large, that mental health presents. During the first national lockdown in March, the Club brought in its Buddy Mentoring Scheme to reach out to its most vulnerable group of supporters, and the scheme was revisited during the second national lockdown in November.

One of the Club’s newest advertising partners, the Learning Curve Group, writes below about the impact of mental health and how they’ve noticed a significant increase in uptake of their online mental health courses, which are absolutely free of charge to anyone over 19 years of age. If anyone wants to find out more information about these mental health courses, the details are at the end of the following article.

There has never been a more important time to focus on mental health. 

Social isolation, financial stress and the health anxiety that has come with COVID-19 is enough to affect anyone’s mental health. No one is immune to it - and fear is growing that the lasting impacts on mental health are going to linger much longer than even the virus itself. 

If we thought mental health services were stretched before, experts are expecting it to get even worse as we enter a restricted Christmas. Charities such as Mind and the Samaritans have called the pandemic a ‘mental health emergency’ as their services become increasingly under pressure.

The Samaritans reported more than 500,000 calls over the first lockdown of 2020, with over 25% mentioning Coronavirus. Isolation this year has been really tough for many people across the country but, despite it being spoken about much more openly, there's still a stigma attached to people with mental ill-health and raising awareness and encouraging people to share their stories will support those who are struggling.

Since March, our teams have seen a huge increase in individuals looking to study a mental health qualification. Since the country went into lockdown, our mental health qualifications have been the most popular as people try to support themselves, family and friends through such unthinkable times.

There’s been a sharp increase in demand for training as we’re seeing staff continue to be furloughed or let go from work. Not only do people want to fill their time in lockdowns with something that will keep their mind busy, but they’re also recognising the health implications once we come out of this crisis. 

Talking to our Curriculum Lead for Health and Social Care, Jayne Carlisle, the magnitude of the crisis is clear. “Discussions with learners during 12 years of practice have shown that whilst all learners have individual reasons for wanting to learn about mental illness, there are usually current drivers. 

“More recently, the demand for accessing training in mental ill-health has risen sharply and whilst those working in education continue to access such training, an increase in parents, carers and individuals working in other professions has been noted. Discussions with learners highlight an increased interest following current trends with new explanations for wanting to know more about mental illness emerging.

“Whilst the reasons for studying may not all be COVID related, people are becoming more aware of their mental health and the impacts that stress can have on their body. Many learners indicate that the Covid-19 restrictions have provided an opportunity to pursue interests, or update CPD that normal working patterns and day to day commitments leave little time for. The impact of the training is huge, individuals are more able to cope with signs and symptoms of the emotional distress that this causes and implement a range of strategies aimed at improving their mental-health while recognising the status of their own mental health.” 

It’s vital that individuals can access the support they need, and that everyone works together to break the taboo that surrounds mental health. Improving knowledge and understanding of mental health can only be a positive, and through this terrible situation the emphasis on mental health is becoming just as prominent as physical health.

Our flexible learning courses that cover this topic include: Mental Health Awareness, Children and Young People’s Mental Health, and Mental Health First Aid and Advocacy in the Workplace. All of the courses are nationally accredited by awarding body NCFE/CACHE and available to study online. The courses can be studied at no cost - funded through the Government’s Adult Education Budget.

We are extremely proud to offer these courses FREE of charge, supporting individuals and businesses to enhance their knowledge on mental health. If you’d like to find out more information on our Mental Health Level 2 programmes visit our dedicated DFC website where you can gather the information or even enrol.


Alternatively, if you’d like to speak about the course first then get in touch via email on:

advanceacademy@learningcurvegroup.co.uk and put DarloFC in the subject line and our friendly staff will be able to help you with any questions.


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